Updated: Feb 12, 2021
Empowering People Inspiring Consciousness
Greetings, Wellness Warriors! What has inspired you lately? After last week’s EPIC event I am feeling the inspiration! Almost 20 years ago, my wife made me watch an episode of Oprah that shifted the way I thought about company culture. We shed the boring annual meeting in favor of a multi-day event focused entirely on the personal development of my employees. I called the conference EPIC, which stands for “Empowering People, Inspiring Consciousness.”
We started EPIC with eight people around a conference table in our first office space - the second floor above a deli. At lunch, we all ordered paninis from the deli downstairs and brought them back up, and we sat around a long conference table and talked about the hopes and dreams of the company. Those hopes and dreams are what got us here today with over 100 EPIC attendees. I am so proud of what we’ve accomplished as a company, and yet there’s much work to do.
The future is bright, but our challenges are many.
We have just ended one of the most challenging years of my thirty-five-year career, and I don’t doubt that it was probably one of the toughest of yours. We are now in a time of rebirth, and this is the time to start new. EPIC was our opportunity to rejuvenate, unite, and come together so we can go forward stronger than ever.
One of the reasons I hold EPIC every year is that it’s a time for employees to reflect on what they want to do with their lives. I want them to think about what their legacy is and how they want to be remembered – even if that means moving on from Aegis Living, I open each EPIC inviting all my employees to leave the company if they don’t feel fulfilled in their work with us. Some have taken me up on that offer. I have been and always will be exhaustive in my support of them. I offer referrals, resources, and advisement to them. Whatever they need, I am committed to doing that.
I’m glad we were able to hold EPIC virtually this year. It was a wonderful 3 days of joy in the face of the last 12 months, which have been daunting, tragic, and sad. I am sorry to say that we have had over 600 staff and residents who have contracted the virus. What amazed me was that when I checked on my employees while in quarantine, they weren’t concerned with getting back to their everyday lives. Their priority was getting back to work to care for our residents. This was so incredibly humbling and honoring. To me, this is what defines loyalty. I am so proud of everyone who works for Aegis Living, and I am humbled by the work we do and the devotion to our residents and their livelihood.
Last year, my wife was going through some painful surgeries and rehab due to a knee injury. She had the care of some of the most beautiful, caring angels I could have ever imagined. That situation reminded me how hard it is to be a caregiver. I was losing sleep and constantly worrying about her pain. I learned from the extraordinary caregivers that came to help me through the day. I realized what a unique gift they provide because they are unbelievable, loving, and selfless human beings. They are angels, and there is no other way to explain it. My wife fell in love with her care staff as they nursed her through her darkest time, and that is a gift.
Finding the Gifts
I have a philosophy in life. It has always served me well when something extremely difficult happens, whether it be a painful loss, a setback, or when something doesn’t go according to plan. Deep down, I know that there is an incredible lesson that God and the universe is trying to teach me. This has always served me well. It has helped me get through the darkness, the sadness, and get me to where I need to be.
There is something I want you to think about. What has the last year taught us? What is the gift? Below are some virtues I believe have been brought to the forefront due to the virus.
It’s important to take care of yourself, so you can live a happier and healthier life. Grab a copy of my latest bestseller, 30 Summers More, and get on the right track to a long, healthy, and fulfilling life!
I have realized that the last year has changed our lives forever, and this will not be over soon. We know the virus is not going to magically disappear. There will continue to be tough times ahead, and I am thankful to our Aegis leadership team, who dove in up to their elbows to make things as painless as possible. We still have pain, but one of the things I am committed to is being Íopen to this painful event’s teachings. That is the thought I want to leave you with. Can you also be open to the teachings and find the hidden gifts from painful events in your life to find your inspiration?
Until next time, Wellness Warriors, Live Well, Live Long!