Remember when you were in college

Published on:
August 27, 2020

For colleges in many parts of the country, it’s back to school time. While my kids are not quite college age, I feel myself paying more attention than usual, probably because it’s seems so surreal (ok, the word is overused but it’s better than 'unprecedented').

When I look back (way back) to the time I was in college, I don’t recall being overly concerned about what was happening in the wide world. Yeah, I went to a bunch of meetings about apartheid, but it didn’t put much of a dent in my social schedule. While I’m not condoning what’s going on at campuses around the country, it’s completely understandable. If I were my 18-year old self and had been cooped up with my parents all spring and summer, I would be sorely tempted to let loose with a crowd of similarly situated peers.

Just saying that we’re holding them to a higher standard than we held for ourselves. I suppose that’s a form of progress and it’s clear that someone responsible needs to come in after us and pick things up.

Some thoughts for keeping it together in these times.

Read your email before you send it. Yep, this is PC (pre-Corona) advice. In my first professional job, it was drummed into me that email should be written as if it could appear in the New York Times. Obviously, the world is a bit more complicated and a whole lot more demanding so one has to deal in shades of gray. Still, it’s a great practice to read what you’ve written before you hit 'send.' The same goes for Slack or Teams or text. Re-read it. You will avoid a whole lot of unnecessary drama.

Take a step back and do something selfish for yourself. Yes, there’s a lot of serious, even troubling stuff going on in the world; and another ominous event is often right around the corner. But — trust me on this — there are plenty of people who worry about this stuff full time (e.g.,  my mother and aunts). So climb down off the watchtower, take a deep breath and do something that makes you feel good.

If you have any thoughts you'd like to share, please pass them on by replying to this email. Here are more tips on making the most of your time at home.

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