Forced Perspective

The silver lining - How the pandemic that targeted breath has forced people, organizations and the planet to breathe.

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres on our open platform. We publish pieces as written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team and must meet our guidelines prior to being published.

We were spinning at a pace that was out of control with no end in sight.

We were not respecting our vital need to breathe as human beings.

We were not respecting the perspective, presence and clear mindedness that breathing brings.

This is something we know…theoretically – “step back to see the big picture”, “stop and refuel”, “take time to think”, “get off the treadmill”, ”enough is enough.

Yet all decisions continued to lead to overload, burnout, of people, our planet, our communities… 

Unaware, keeping up and continuing to contribute to the pandemic of busyness, stress, operating without awareness and “too much” as the drivers.

Meditation and yoga everywhere as the new band aids but added as the “new thing that must do” in a non-stop schedule.

No clarity, alignment, or action to create a sustainable pace and address well-being from the core.

We didn’t understand – we are beginning to understand that some fundamental things had to change.

We stopped, went stir crazy, tried to wrap our heads around what was happening – the immensity of the shift, and then… started to breathe…

Realized we didn’t need all we thought we did to function.

Had to be confined in order to finally rethink freedom…

To open our eyes to really take in that due to baseless hatred, some people can never breathe, another man murdered and this time, by having his breath taken away.

Breathe to really think about the massive shifts the world must undergo 

Breathe to immediately see the impact when our planet can also breathe

Breath to reconnect with ourselves, our values, our families and neighbors

Pause to connect to purpose, to think about what we truly want and need. Why we do what we do.

Breathe to rethink our companies and organizations and how to give them breath to survive and thrive.

Breathe in order to clarify what is most important, how to best achieve that, and then align our choices and actions with what matters most.

Most leaders I have spoken with say they will never go back to how it was now that this forced experience has shown them how it could be.

We always talk with leaders and organizations about the absolute necessity of taking a step back to deeply reflect on their purpose and what they must focus on to remain relevant given the pace of innovation and change. Now that we have done and will do all we can to keep our people safe and healthy, let’s take this precious forced gift of breath to imagine, clarify and align on what will really matter to our organizations, stakeholders and industries in our new world.

Even the most resistant to change have seen that they have had to adapt and adopt new mindsets and ways of being and working, so the field is ripe for receptivity to change as we have all seen that we can’t escape it.

So let’s focus on what really matters in all aspects of life and work.

A new appreciation for the precious time we will never get back. Time missed; opportunities missed.

Appreciation for the simple things like cooking and eating with family every single day. Walking and smelling the flowers.

Gratitude for things we take for granted, people we take for granted and professions we take for granted.

What will we learn? What will we take away? What will we change?

Will we allow ourselves to stop breathing again?

Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

You might also like...


A 2020 Vision: How B Corp Can Offer Hope

by Kerrie McDevitt

What This Pandemic Has Taught Me About Life & My Priorities.

by TheFemaleProfessional

Positive communication to create a happy world

by Guillermo Taboada

Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

Thrive Global
People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.


We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.