Perspective Letter

Most of us are probably thankful to see 2020 come to an end. But we can certainly use the lessons we learned during that tumultuous year to create new beginnings and new perspectives going forward.

It is hard to believe that 2021 is finally here, especially after the previous year seemed to have so many starts and stops, so many ups and downs. Now that we’ve rung in the new year, I pray that we have all turned a corner toward a brighter future! As I stated in last year’s letter, my mindset and perspective have changed drastically over the past few years, and 2020 certainly contributed to those changes. We saw economic and public health issues we never thought we’d have to face. We sorted through emotions of whether we should visit our loved ones throughout the holiday season or remain home — and for some, home alone.

Yes, 2020 was the year of trial and struggle. But for me, it was also the year of favor. That’s because I continue to discover what is important in life. I believe how we choose to receive life’s lessons is directly tied to the impact they have on us. Were we drowning, or was our strength through adversity revealed to us in ways we never knew we were cultivating? Were we gaining power and resilience that will launch the next chapter of our lives? Perspective is essential to survival. I have come to realize that life doesn’t just happen to us, rather, how we choose to perceive the lesson becomes our reality.

Now that you have just enjoyed another holiday season and reflected on 2020, I ask you to see things through a different perspective. Do not ask yourself how you stayed afloat or even succeeded during a difficult year, but rather how many families did you help get through it. If you have had the good fortune of not experiencing too much adversity during the pandemic, look back at the ways you assisted those who had much harder time coping with the situation.

As we know, we’re not out of the woods yet, and there are always opportunities to make a true difference in other people’s lives. Now, we must act upon those opportunities. Whether it’s a family member or a complete stranger, somebody out there needs you. Be available for them. You’ll be glad you were, and so will they.

We have all heard that “life is short,” and we have been reminded of the truth of those words over the past several months. Let’s resolve to make the most of our time in 2021. It’s easy to say “there’s nowhere to go but up” after an incredibly challenging year. But even during better days, which I hope are in store for all of us this year, there is always a way to have an uplifting influence on the lives of everyone we encounter.

- Lawrence Montani