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Hope When It's Hard

Day 5 of the 40 Day Positivity Challenge

This evening the Fijian Government announced another 35 positive COVID19 cases with 17 of those cases discovered at Fiji’s largest referral health facility CWM Hospital. When the Permanent Secretary For Health, Dr James Fong made an announcement last night that parts of the hospital were now closed to the public, in addition to the closure of the Nadi sub divisional hospital, my heart sank. I found myself momentarily caught up in a wave of, Oh my goodness we are in some serious trouble if the infections are happening at the CWM Hospital.

So for most of today as I looked out for stories of positivity I was also becoming more and more aware of how difficult it is to continue to remain positive in the midst of what is a worrying situation that is deteriorating by the hour. This was brought even closer to home with a message from a cousin to say that a whole family had tested positive nearby.

Which is exactly why this is called the Positivity Challenge. The Cambridge Dictionary describes the word Challenge as (the situation of being faced with) something that needs great mental or physical effort in order to be done successfully and therefore tests a person's ability

It’s only Day 5 of the 40-day positivity challenge and the reality of this requiring great mental or physical effort in order for it to be done successfully and consistently for the next 35 days is real.

Having said that it has also been encouraging to read of the efforts of many amazing Fijian people today – the former hotel worker who has been going around Suva city distributing cooked food to the homeless, the group of girlfriends who got together and created a Go Fund Me account to raise funds for the needy and who have collectively raised over $7000 to support the work done by an NGO and the great work done by Families Helping Families Fiji, a Facebook page set up to assist needy families for free at this time. I was also really moved by a post acknowledging the man who sells peanuts at the traffic lights at Samabula, hustling daily to make a living with the post encouraging motorists who drive by to buy a packet or two to support his efforts.

John C Maxwell in his book Leadershift highlights the twin expectations of faith and fact as key for every leader. Faith helps us believe that we will prevail in the end and fact reminds us that the process won’t be easy.

Tonight, as we turn in from the nation of Fiji, I would like to encourage us all from these words from the book Leadershift;

“Hope empowers me to believe that I can make the climb. It fuels me with energy to continue when I get tired. And it enables me to speak hope into the lives of people who are journeying with me. I cannot give hope to others if I do not possess it myself. It must come from a place of authenticity because you can’t fake hope. As you encourage yourself, your people feel that encouragement too. As you encourage them, you also become encouraged. It creates a positive cycle that keeps everyone moving forward.”

Let' s continue to remain hopeful and keep the positive cycle going acknowledging the good work that is being done in the midst of a very challenging time.

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