It’s Time to Build a New Normal

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By Melissa Davies, Wise Ways Consulting

Chadwick Boseman, the star of 2018 hit Black Panther, died last week after a four-year private battle with colon cancer. Really, 2020! You took King T’Challa. We’ve lost a bright star, a talented actor with a local connection. He graduated in 2000 from Howard University in D.C.  I don’t mean to make light of this. Boseman’s character is a representative of truth, justice, and hope. I write in the present because his character and his generous spirit as a human will never die.

This is still 2020 and sadly, loss seems to be a part of our new normal. It’s time to move forward. School is about to begin. September is the traditional let’s get back work month. This September, I’d like to recommend a different “get back” list.

  1. Don’t put off your health. Boseman’s death reminds me that though we are in the midst of a pandemic, it’s essential to keep up with our regular medical appointments and screenings. People are ignoring medical symptoms and necessary treatments and the results as detailed in this Washington Post story are significant.
  2. Download the COVIDWise app. Virginia (yay, us!) is the first state to have an app for your phone that can alert you to possible COVID-19 exposure. It doesn’t track personal information. But, it will only work if enough people have the app and use it. Please, take a few moments and read about it.
  3. If you are a renter and have concerns about an eviction this month about, there’s help.
  4. Accept that if you have children, they will be home (and safe) for the start of the school year. If your school has not issued a loaner laptop, you may be scrambling because, yes, there is a laptop shortage. You thought toilet paper and hand sanitizer were hard to find! But, we’re scrappy, we’ve learned how to find what we need. Here’s a link to some PC sourcing information from Consumer Reports.
  5. Don’t wait for a crisis to solve a problem. If food insecurity is an issue for you or anyone you know, here are some resources in Prince William.

We need to become comfortable being uncomfortable and find ways to accept and create a life that allows us to be socially distant but connected. Donate to the local food banks. Be a good neighbor and wear a mask (even if you’ve recovered from COVID-19; be a role model). Look out for your family, your friends, and your community. And one final on the September to-do, get a flu shot. They will soon be available because you don’t want to have to fight the flu and COVID-19 at the same time.

As the character Black Panther said, “In times of crisis, the wise build bridges, while the foolish build barriers.” Let’s build a bridge to a new normal in Prince William County.


Melissa Davies is an executive leadership coach and facilitator as well as the author of How Not to Act Like a BLEEP at Work.  She resides in Prince William County and runs Wise Ways Consulting, which specializes in leadership, management and team development, executive coaching, group facilitation and high-engagement training.  She can be reached at or through





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