We’re still here, fam

5 min readApr 1, 2024


Getting society back to higher ground through awareness and empathy post covid.

How it started

Remember the days of over overpacked elevators, intimate shared rides and coughing without remorse? It was a time when coffee or lunch was a short text away. Handshakes landed deals and jobs. Travel was affordable. Strangers stayed on the same side of the sidewalk. We thrived on contact and cologne, whether it was brainstorming at the office or catching up with friends at a packed concert. Job interviews meant dressing to impress, while networking events provided the perfect opportunity to make meaningful connections beyond the screen. Today, it’s a tad different (but does it need to be?).

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez 🇨🇦 on Unsplash

How it’s going

Then the vid came crashing in like the koolaid man, turning most things wildly upside down and not exactly covered in a tasty sweet tea. Suddenly, lives were put on hold, and we found ourselves navigating abruptly new territory. Not that I didn’t love zero traffic or getting food from a 2x2 window wearing gloves and a hazmat suit, but it certainly changed me (and society). Zoom weddings and funerals became the norm (yes I attended some), and distancing from your spouse became routine. It was an adjustment, but we adapted (sorta). We made the best of the situation, finding peace in virtual hangouts and subreddits. That said, I do have and appreciate a flexible working schedule and a lot of peaceful time to myself to which I’ve throughly enjoyed that shift.

Photo by Martin Sanchez on Unsplash

Ready, player you

Alright, let’s get real. In the midst, it’s all too easy to get caught up in our own struggles and forget about those around us. Sure there is a lot to consider — but we should read the room, given the furrow of the wake we were left in. Whether a friend lost their job, is battling illness, or navigating a life change, we can’t afford to forget, otherwise we may get stuck like this. Isolation cuts pretty deep and can have downstream impact. Without face time, the little things that make us human take a back seat, and in all honesty have let AI and deepfakes do most of the work.

But in all seriousness, if you know someone navigating a milestone, achievement, or hardship — take 10 min to call them. Shits hard out there. Applying for jobs means 20–30 applications that may result in 1 call back. Net new friends means having a child or relocating to Brazil. Relgious war is real. Getting your aging parents on a plane…well it doesn’t happen. Social media keeps me up to date with engagements, career changes and births I wouldn’t otherwise know of, but boy it can be desensitizing to watch so much unfold on a tiny piece of glass.

This is fine

In the wake of Covid, the job market has become a dumpster fire, with many finding themselves caught in the crossfire of layoffs and too embarrassed to talk about it publicly. A lot of talented folks are now in shark infested waters and have bills to pay. Careers have been derailed, and the competition is bloated like never before. Amidst this, there’s a silver lining: a shift in mindset from chasing careers to aligning with companies that share our values and vision for a longer haul. However, RTO isn’t just about reigniting togetherness. While touted as a means to foster collaboration and innovation, the reality is that it can often be far from it. For many, it means sacrificing the flexibility and work-life balance that remote work offers. A return to a rigid daily life of commutes, small talk and looming big brother — where the needs of the individual are often overshadowed by the bottom line. It’s the Wild West (esp in tech) out there and we should leverage each other to help each other.

Photo by Elijah Hiett on Unsplash

Time fast as hell

It just kinda still isn’t like it used to be, and we don’t talk about it as much as we should. As we reflect on the last few years, it’s been a mess of an unconventional (my 30’s) period for most, with the years slipping by faster than we could have imagined.

The last five years, in particular, have been a black hole — a blur of milestones and life-changing moments experienced primarily in isolation. Whether it’s welcoming new additions to the family, grappling with medical conditions, or navigating life changes, these experiences have unfolded away from the support networks we rely on the most. I went from traveling with friends any weekend to finding out a kid is on the way through the reshare of a friends Facebook post. If you don’t have children yet, and 80% of your network does — it is for sure a shift. It’s a stark reminder of how swiftly time moves and how important it is to cherish fleeting moments.

Photo by Marília Castelli on Unsplash

Moving forward

Evolve out of this state of mind. Okay that takes millions of years but the idea of trying is the same:

(1) call or text friends and family

(2) help job seekers

(3) be present on and offline

(4) open up and relate


Now, more than ever, we need to reconnect with what makes us human. Reaching out to friends, in-person meetups, and embracing face-to-face interactions once again. It’s about rediscovering the art of conversation and meaningful connections beyond the screen. Let’s take a step towards reclaiming some fabric. With a little bit of effort and empathy, I believe we can get back to basics.

So, that said — while I understand there was a lot gained from remote work and life, there has and continues to be a grey area for so many. If this hits close to home for you, don’t hesitate to reach out to a friend, co-worker, or family member. It may make or break their day, month, or year.