Focus – What We Can Do Today!
Nick Saban, the head football coach at Alabama preaches one philosophy to his team: “Let’s think about what we can do today.” Football, as in life, is complex. So, instead of focusing on winning a championship which can be weeks or months away, Coach Saban preaches that we focus on “winning what’s right in front of us,” he tells his players. “Be the best at the task at hand.” It’s this philosophy that has made him arguably one of the best coaches in the history of American sports with 6 national championships and cabinets full of trophies.
Over the last few months, new challenges seem to have presented themselves each and every day, challenges that we as a nation have worked hard to meet, as only we know how. With summer upon us, getting things back to normal while keeping folks safe and healthy looks to be our biggest challenge yet. How we fare is simply a matter of how we decide to face it. Can we focus on what we can each day? And make solid progress one step at a time?
There are things we can and cannot control in these times. Yet for the things we can control, we do what we can, in the moment, to the best of our ability. Whether it’s a challenging workout, being present with our family or friends, learning how to adapt to a new work situation… Whatever it is, we can choose to face these challenges one step at a time with our best foot forward. By doing so, we give ourselves new opportunities with every new day, ensuring we’re always moving forward, in a positive direction. It’s a powerful philosophy in any moment, not just this one.
Food for Thought – ‘Thank You!’
With parts of the country starting to open up, I’m especially excited for all those folks who work in the restaurant and hospitality industry. So many of them have had such a hard time – struggling with closures and scaled back operations over the past several months. Remember, these individuals and businesses are the staples of many of our communities, true givers and community supporters who provide valuable jobs and do things like donate free meals for charity, and sponsor little league programs. Let’s push ourselves to be innovative in ways we can help them, for when they succeed, we all do. For example.
On Thursday, the City of Manchester and community organizations like the Chamber of Commerce and Intown Manchester helped promote “Manchester Takeout Day.” The ask was for patrons to select from one of their favorite eateries and order take out. It was that simple, but it served several purposes. For one, it gave them much needed business. Secondly, it allowed for those establishments beginning to re-open a chance to get their feet wet after being closed for a long period. And lastly, it helped them develop best practices under what is likely to be a temporary new normal. What a fantastic idea! And I was delighted to see so many people participate and to show their support via social media! Kudos!!!
Also, on Thursday, my good friend Jack Heath hosted an extended hour of his morning talk show. This dedicated programming was focused on the restaurant industry. Jack brought in industry leaders and business owners to help explain new guidelines and what to expect in the days and months ahead. It's important we know what to expect and how we, as patrons, can be prepared as our favorite restaurants or watering holes open up. While Karen and I have been enjoying the chance to do more home cooking, we’ve begun to have some serious cravings for our favorite Portsmouth restaurants and are already putting together a list of those we hope to visit soon.
The hospitality industry has been there for us, and I know we will all be there for them. To help one another is key and to enjoy a meal from one of our favorite spots is the gravy!
Dogs: Finding a ‘Double Positive’ in the Pandemic
Here is a wonderful irony – a positive twist of fate. On the one hand, dogs have been a true source of comfort for their owners during the virus. Providing support in a very special way, as only dogs can do. At the same, time, the pandemic has been a dream come true for dogs – a huge ‘positive’ for so many of our furry canine friends across this great nation. Their owners have been home! All day, every day. Taking them for walks, petting them throughout the day, extra treats, and more! A ‘Double Positive’ – a win for owners and a wonderful win for dogs! People are finding that their pets are helping to reduce the stress and anxieties of the new "normal" while giving them hope. Pets are helping lift their owners’ spirits in many ways. 1. Dogs have a great way of picking up on your emotions and are great listeners. Sharing your thoughts out loud can help you work through the issues of the moment. 2. Dogs are great for a laugh! Often without any effort, dogs provide comic relief. They're experts at chasing their tails and hiding their toys! 3. They encourage a healthy lifestyle. Many dogs are more than happy to join you for a walk which is a great way to get some much-needed exercise. 4. With social distancing and quarantining, interpersonal interaction is limited. Meanwhile, dogs are safe for a cuddle. Hugging your pets not only feels great but it also reduces stress or anxiety and releases feel-good hormones. 5. Sharing is caring! Many of our social media newsfeeds are full of less than positive news these days. Sharing a picture of your favorite four-legged friend can bring joy to friends and family. There's nothing like a funny pet picture to make a connection and bring a smile to someone's face.
Positive Profile of the Week – Marga Coulp
This week’s profile is someone near and dear to Karen and myself, Marga Coulp. Marga lives in Dover, NH, and runs the well-known hair salon, Classic Cutters, located in Portsmouth. She has been in business for herself since 1970, has been wildly successful and show no signs of slowing down. Marga’s commitment to her community is steadfast. she is an incredible advocate for our veterans. She has participated in countless veteran outreach programs, with Veterans Count and Children of Fallen Patriots being among them. She has boundless energy and enthusiasm and is never shy to let you know what she thinks. You can easily identify her around town as her car’s license plate bears her name. Marga is one of those people who you know you can count on and will always do the right thing for the right reasons. She has an irrepressible ‘can-do’ attitude that, coupled with her enthusiasm for life, makes her one of our very favorite people of all time to be around. And, we are especially happy to pay tribute to Marga right now – as her salon has just recently reopened – and there is an extra special spring in her step and smile on her face. Go Marga!
Quotes of the Week: What You Can Do Today!
“Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” Warren Buffett
“Our real problem, then, is not our strength today; it is rather the vital necessity of action today to ensure our strength tomorrow.” Dwight D. Eisenhower “Today is the only day. Yesterday is gone.” John Wooden “You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.” Abraham Lincoln “Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one.” Dr. Seuss