Love Over Covid

COVID-19 has infiltrated the world, but I assure you that is has not taken over the world. There have been so many stories of heroism, selflessness, and acts of love that have crossed barriers of race, creed, and geography.

The time to rise-up is now. We need to focus on building a better future for our kids and the generations to come. The more we fix our thoughts on the mess and chaos COVID-19 has brought into our lives, the more distracted we become. It’s just like anything else in life that tries to disrupt our flow and cause panic and uncertainty of the future.

Don’t get me wrong, COVID-19 is a severe issue that is being felt all around the world, but I think that we have given enough of ourselves to the disease and the fear it brings along with it. We have stopped working, socializing with others, and enjoying recreational activities.

The very essence of humanity is found in the community and fulfilling our need to contribute and belong to something greater than ourselves. However, this disease has not allowed us to do the things we love with the people we love for fear of acquiring or spreading the disease.

I’m just like most people who have been affected by COVID-19 pandemic and the trail of destruction it has left behind as it passes through our cities. I have waited in long lines for simple necessities and tried my best to manage my thoughts on whether I should bulk buy certain foods and supplies.

There’s no doubt we felt the economic impact, and the aftershock of the tidal wave COVID-19 brought into our communities. My wife is a Hairstylist and had to stop working due to the demands of social distancing; in-which has reduced our household income significantly. We have learned to live lean and buy only the essentials while enjoying some of the classic junk foods, like Doritos and OREOS.

This lockdown has a silver lining, and my taste buds are the beneficiary, as my daughter has taken a liking to baking cakes, cupcakes, and cooking simple breakfast meals such as pancakes and eggs. We try not to stick our heads in the ground and pretend like nothing is going on around us. Instead, we focus on good thoughts and what we can do to better ourselves and others.

We have a home GYM and have been spending a lot of our extra time working out and running off all the cupcakes and Doritos we ate over the last month, lol. I say all this to share that my family and I are no different than many of you; however, we’re determined not to let this thing win. I’m hoping that just like our family workouts, we can burn off all the excess and run lean with true intentions on making this a better place to live.

I want to encourage you to continue to pray, fight, and work towards a better future. There’s one thing for sure, and that is we don’t know how long we have on this earth, but what we do know is that we can control what we do while we’re on this earth.

If you’re unsure of which direction to take, choose the one that leads you through the road ahead. If just getting out of bed is a battle for you, then I want to encourage you to open your eyes and immediately think of how blessed you are to see the ceiling above you, and that you have a roof above you. Sight and the simple necessities of life are overlooked and underappreciated.

It’s to rise-up and look beyond COVID-19, we have given up so much for this thing, and now it’s time to take back our lives and trust that this too shall pass. We still must abide by the law and remain distant from others, but that doesn’t mean we can’t connect and encourage others while we’re safe in our home.

If you see someone down and out, speak up, physically speak into them by reminding them that we’re all in this together and that they are more durable and more resilient than they think. Encouragement is a powerful tool that God has blessed us with, as it says in 1 Thessalonians 5:11, So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.

I like the way encouragement is described in Hebrews 10:24-25. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. 25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.

I’m writing this piece in hopes of encouraging others to get rid of fear and to get-up and fight, as we work to end this pandemic and regain our sense of humanity and purpose.

I refuse to give up and quit, and in doing so, I’ll continue to get up every day, go to work, and live my life with purpose as I try to instill the same mindset and behaviors into my own kids. I hope that my kids will be able to look back at this historic moment in time and reflect on all the good deeds they witnessed throughout our communities.

Now is not the time to withdraw from others but instead lean-in and share each other’s burdens as if they were our own. I urge you to be the light, be the love, and be an answered prayer for someone. If you feel it in your heart to give, pray, and do, then just do it.

This, too, shall pass, and we’re going to come out on the other side stronger, healthier, and living a more prosperous and purpose-driven life.

I want to encourage you to live resiliently, be the love in action when others are in need, and remember, quitting is not an option.

#NoQuit #NoFear #BeTheLove

How To Become a More Authentic & Effective Leader

Authentic leadership is vital in our pursuit of greatness. Leading with integrity is key because we can only lead when people are willing to trust us with their time, talents and resources. Authentic leadership is highly coveted because people matter. God designed us to be leaders in our communities, families and in the workplace. The gifts that he imparted to us are intended to be used for his plan and vision. When we lead knowing that ultimately it is all for the honor and glory of our Lord, then the burden becomes a privilege and leading others becomes a joy. When we humble ourselves as servants of the Lord, we know that God will not keep anything from us and that he will provide the right tools, people and resources that will help us reach our end goal. It is vital that we lead knowing that all people matter, and that means that their hopes, and dreams matter as well. It also means that their special gifts and talents matter. Authentic leadership places value on people’s dreams and is in agreement that they too should be able to accomplish their hearts desires. It also means that if all people matter, then we ought to listen and communicate with people on a deeper level and develop strong relationships. We do this, not for the sake of our own agendas, but because life is meant to be lived in community. Life is messy and we need all the help we can get. When we band together and trust in each other we can accomplish something great – we can go beyond our limits and reach new levels of success like never before.

Employees, athletes, students and even church members are becoming so confused as to what a true leader is and is not. It’s because leadership has taken all kinds of forms lately and the people who we thought were leaders turned out to be flakes and crumbled under pressure. It’s because of past experiences of poor leadership, we must do a better job at defining leadership by exemplifying authentic leadership. If we’re going to use the term “lead by example” then we have to follow that up by stating the most important thing about leadership, and that is – it’s not about us but about the people. It’s about the people that choose to join us in our mission and offer themselves up for the cause. When we lead with authenticity people will rally and willingly sacrifice their time, talents and resources to accomplish company goals. They’ll do this because they know that they can trust you and that we as leaders are selflessly sacrificing just the same. When we put others first it is evident and visible to all – when we put others first – it is love in action.

Here are some key characteristics and skills needed to obtain in order to deliver authentic and powerful leadership:

  • Humility
  • Knowledge
  • Wisdom
  • Discernment
  • Empathy
  • The Skill and Art of Precision Listening
  • Sales & Negotiation Skills That Demonstrate Experience and Swag
  • Effective Communication – Story Telling & Fearless Motivational Skills

I believe that with the acquisition and implementation of these attributes and skills, you’ll be able to lead and inspire your team to do great and wonderful things never imagined. You’ll also be able to demonstrate how they too can grow in leadership by following your lead and example. In the end – it’s not about rule and rein but about growth and reproduction. It’s about the development of your team’s character and how well they’ll respond to the challenge when they are asked to lead. What type of leaders are you shaping and what is the legacy they’re following? Are you ready to lead with authenticity and become a more efficient and effective leader of change? If so, I would encourage you to take your current skill set and adapt the forementioned attributes to fuse them together and experience growth and success.

So, I want to turn it over to you and ask you to share what are some of your thoughts on leadership? Who in your personal or professional life has shown exemplary leadership skills and has influenced you to pursue your dreams? How will you incorporate authentic leadership in your business?

For more insight on leadership and growing your business using the art of story telling and content marketing, visit gonzalesmedia.com.

Jesus Gonzales - Marketing Consultant
Jesus Gonzales – Marketing Consultant