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Positive thinking: Come out better on the other side

Photo Credit: Kalawin /iStock Photo

The new intern that we added to the staff this week has hit the ground running, to say the least.

We talked yesterday at 1 p.m. At 7 p.m., the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors discussed, then voted on, a plan to remove the “At the Ready” monument that sits outside the Albemarle County Courthouse.

By 10 p.m., she had filed her first story, which we decided to feature in the Top Story slot on the front page.

I don’t know how we lucked into landing Grace for the semester.

She had me in the interview at, I like to keep up with City Council and Board of Supervisors meetings. Would it be OK if I covered them for AFP?

Actually, I know exactly how we landed her.

She reviewed her options for going back for the start of her sophomore year, decided against the online learning options she had, and set herself on doing something productive with her gap semester.

This is the attitude that I’ve tried to have the past five months.

I decided, Day 1, that however long this lasts, I want to come out better on the other side.

Grace, most definitely, will come out better on the other side.

I’m still working on it, personally.

I feel like I’m a better journalist and editor than I was five months ago – asking more questions, demanding more thorough answers, more willing to take deep dives, to overturn the tables of the money changers, so to speak.

I’ve also learned how to get myself to slow down, which had, up until five months ago, been damn near impossible.

I’ve made it a point to read more – deep reads, into philosophy, political theory, behavioral economics.

I take better care of my fitness, which might seem odd for somebody who has run three marathons to say, but it’s something I’ve forced myself to focus on, in the absence of being able to go to the gym.

I’ve developed a routine that has me doing an hour of running or cycling each day, plus 1,500 pushups, plus evening walks around the neighborhood, around a rigorous schedule of backyard time with the pups.

Five months ago, I’d run, then sit at my desk for hours at a time.

I don’t want to go back to that.

As much as I oriented myself at the outset of this into coming out better on the other side, I wouldn’t have bet back then that it might actually happen.

Have to admit, part of me thought it was the other part tricking my head into believing pop psychobabble that I knew deep down not to be true.

Joke’s on me: the power of positive thinking works.

Story by Chris Graham