Read time: 3 minutes

Experiencing a Rebirth

Dec 4 / Todd Houston

For all of us, this year has been one filled with remarkable change, both personally and in our society. The global COVID-19 pandemic has not only caused a significant loss of life, but it has shifted how we work, shop, and conduct ourselves within our communities.

Nothing of this depth or scope has happened before in our lifetimes.

 

While this pandemic has been unprecedented, I remain an eternal optimist. I do believe that we, as a country, and by extension, as a global community, will defeat this virus. Vaccines are being tested, and they will be distributed in the coming months. Individuals of conscience will continue to wear masks, socially distance, and wash their hands. Things will get better.

 

However, I don’t think we’ll ever go back to “normal,” mainly because the old normal wasn’t working for many people.

There is a new awareness about societal issues that must be addressed, and I think we’ll see significant changes in this decade that positively affect racial disparities, environmental challenges, access to healthcare, income inequalities, and pervasive hunger – to name only a few.

I look forward to these changes, and I believe that we, as a global community, will experience a rebirth of sorts.

 

In my role with our company, I also look forward to how 3C will undergo a rebirth. Over two years ago, working with my partners, Scott and Tami, we took the first steps on this journey to build a new company.

Honestly, none of us knew the amount of work it would take to have a successful business, and believe me, we’re still learning and adapting. We’ve had several starts and sudden stops along the way.

 

For example, we had a basic website in the beginning, but we soon realized that we needed a different, more expansive online platform if we wanted to achieve that we envisioned for the company. Essentially, we had to start over. Go back to the basics and start again with a different team of people who could help us.

 

We’ve spent much of 2020 rebuilding our website and getting the level of functionality we need in place. We also launched two new podcasts, Telepractice Today and EmpowEAR Audiology, and we continued to produce the ACT To Live and The Listening Brain podcasts. We added blogging to the website, and we also have webinars and courses available.

 

In this year of profound changes, our commitment to building a vibrant and robust company remains undeterred. More importantly, we want you to witness our rebirth and join us on this new journey.

Together, I know that we’ll learn from each other, and in the process, we’ll create a company unlike any other.

 

~K. Todd Houston


You’ve certainly experienced loneliness, right?. But did you know about its long-term effects?

Former surgeon general, Vivek Murthy, claims that: 

"People who struggle with loneliness end up living shorting lives…are at an increased risk for heart disease, depression, dementia, anxiety, and a host of other conditions.”

Now that statement makes you stop and think, “I don’t want that.” Now to clarify, loneliness isn’t inherently wrong; each one of us needs time alone. It also is not entirely based on how big or small your social network encompasses. Instead, loneliness becomes an issue when it turns into something more chronic.

Professor of psychology and neuroscience at Brigham Young University, Julianne Holt- Lunstad, defines loneliness as

"…the discrepancy between our actual level of social connection and our desired level of connection.”

You see, what’s haunting about loneliness is that it shows no prejudice based on race, class, or gender. Anyone can feel lonely, even if it seems like they would be the last person to experience it.


The idea of loneliness can heavily impact not just a person’s physical health but mental health too. Support systems feel like they’re breaking down. All you feel is isolation. Self-preservation takes over.


The point of learning about the effects of loneliness shouldn’t make you dismayed. Instead, it should inform you to protect yourself against chronic loneliness better and assist others when they could feel lonely. Loneliness indicates that we should be connecting with others to live in a community.


Think about what community means or looks like to you:
  • What does community look like to me? In-person? Digital?
  • What are some communities that I could be a part of based on shared interests?


Try to identify what friends you connect with most:

  • Which friends do you connect with the most? Why?
  • Should I start making a weekly or monthly time to hang out more with this friend?


Or you could start making new connections at the park, an event, at school. Anywhere. On the flip side, give people grace when they might be feeling lonely. Their distance and bad behavior may be symptoms of a more significant issue they are internalizing. Better yet, ask them if they need help with anything. You could brighten their day.

If you or someone else you know ever starts feeling loneliness in the worst way, breathe. Realize that often it’s a temporary phase that can be resolved by leaning on old connections or creating new ones. Of course, dealing with loneliness is a personal process. Take your time.

There is no shame in feeling lonely. However, we should remember to do our best to avoid the type of loneliness that affects physical and mental health because there is so much more life to live.

Connect, Communicate, and Collaborate. That is the 3C way!

Thanks for reading,

~Katheryn

Note: This article is a summary and review of a piece done by Freakonomics Podcast. The source can be found here: https://freakonomics.com/podcast/loneliness/.

 

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About the blogger

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT

Todd is currently a Professor of Speech-Language Pathology at The University of Akron.

In a career that has spanned nearly 30 years, Dr. Houston has been a photojournalist, an Executive Director/CEO of an international non-profit organization, a clinician, published author, researcher, and an academic. This professional journey has shaped a world-view that embraces diversity and supports engagement across cultures.

Dr. Houston has a passion for ensuring that others have an opportunity to fully express themselves.

Combining his journalism background with more than two decades of focused work with children and adults impacted by hearing loss, Dr. Houston has co-created a company that is committed to producing a range of content that informs and inspires.

Through the 3C Digital Media Network, Dr. Houston will bring together a diverse array of voices who can tell their stories and inspire others to be their very best selves.

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