This Week in Bad News: Looking to Learn
This week has been breathtaking. Just this week:
A friend learned her little girl has a spinal tumor and is being rushed by neuro-oncologists in for surgery.
A friendâ€™s son was murdered.
Someone was arrested who had fooled me and my friends completely.
The ice storm caused my aunt and my friendâ€™s dad to get hurt badly (one ankle broken in three places, one set of bad bruises). And a distant cousin (second cousin once removed, technically) was killed in a freak accident.
And, of course, with unemployment the highest it’s been in 15 years, about a dozen friends are dealing with layoffs and pay cuts. And Tracy remains in the ICU.
I, and a lot of people I know, are reeling. And these are not my stories to tell, so I feel squeamish even putting them here. But what’s more to the point, they are not my stories, you know? At least for the moment, my own comparative good fortune is humbling, almost shameful. All I seem able to to is be there for the people who need it, be grateful and thankful and worthy of whatever tragedy I am spared right now, and try to learn.
So today, Gary‘s “Turning Negatives Into Positives” vlog caught my eye, given the above. Of course, it’s not actually about major life crises. He’s talking about how to handle a crisis using social media, and how you can’t wait for a standard PR response anymore – using his own example of his site getting hacked (again, this week).
But I have to think that this has lessons both ways – yes, in terms of how social media can help in a business crisis, but also to think about what this could tell you about how to handle bigger things in life. I’m probably reaching, trying to make sense of it all, but I think there’s still something valid there.
Because I think that the point is, either way, that when something goes wrong, you have to talk about it. Figure it out as best you can, commiserate about what you can’t fix, share what you’re thinking and feeling, and for what you can do something about, get on the ground and fix it. Don’t wait till you can do it right, don’t wait till you have the right words, because you might not ever. Just be thoughtful and active. Do you agree?