As I sit here writing this from my dining room table covered in kids activities, play-doh, pencils, homework and half eaten snacks, I could have never predicted this is what we would be doing on our much anticipated spring break. We are on day 12 of quarantine. I, like many, have experienced a roller coaster of emotions and scarily seem to be "settling" into this new normal.
The world as we knew it has turned upside down in a matter of weeks. As an American designer, we are now faced with challenges that could not have been anticipated. Last week was the lowest week in my entire career, to be forced to face the economic reality before us and taking action to keep our business moving forward during this unprecedented time.
After many, many tears and a number of sleepless nights, I decided to get up and fight. While many have different ways of coping with the uncertainty, I have found that the only way that works for me is to remain positive, to offer some levity and to take breaks from the constant barrage of news. Pro-tip: You will feel immensely better if you take a step away from the news surrounding Covid-19. Yes, this is terrifying, yes, the United States has the most cases in the world, but we need to take time for ourselves and temper this with good thoughts, with heroes and with some sunlight. Remaining in a positive, forward thinking mindset can boost your immune system and the mental state of those around you.
Through seeing the reactions of my peers and friends, I was motivated to bring my community full of my Rebecca Minkoff team, friends, family and customers together in positivity. Knowing how daunting this all is from personal experience, I wanted to offer support or words of wisdom where I could. Since I do not have all of the answers or right words to share, I wanted to create an open forum that the public can tune into and tap into my network of wonderful women from different industries and backgrounds to share their thoughts and feelings through all of this. From this concept, we launched Happiest Hours, where I host live streams each day on my Instagram channel with different guests.
An Open Letter to American Fashion Designers
Rebecca Minkoff Gets By With a Little Help From Her Blogger Friends
How Brands and Their PR Teams Are Navigating Communications During a Pandemic
I have seen how positivity and hope can spread firsthand working with my team. Fighting our way through the challenges we have faced in the past week has made my team more connected than ever. For what seems like the first time, we are truly working together and working to ensure we’re all on the same page. Each moment of success in the past week has been a result of the team communicating more, supporting each other more and going above and beyond their job requirements. The conversation has shifted away from, "This is not my job," or "I am busy." Now more than ever, we ask one another, "What do you need and how can we help?" I hope we can take this newfound compassion with us when we return to the workplace.
I also hope that social media continues to be a place of support following this pandemic. It would be amazing if the beautiful people sharing their talents with us and coming together to create a space for uplifting discussion becomes the new normal, instead of the constant need to promote the "perfect" image. This crisis has truly highlighted how nimble we are as humans and that nothing can stop us from connecting or showing compassion, even if it means not being able to visit or hug one another. It is one of the greatest lessons we can learn from all of this. We are a group. As a species we need to connect, share and support; it is our soul food. For so long, America has been divided. Now, we want to reach out and hug each other. There is a silver lining here, and it is up to each one of us to find our own and celebrate it.