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I want to start with a quote that has stuck with me every since I first read it, attributed to Johnny Cash: “If you don’t get outside every day, even for a minute, you have not appreciated what God has done. It makes you grateful for our surroundings, and it starts your day differently.”

Every time I step outside I am struck by how true this is. We work tirelessly to make out indoor world as comfortable and static as possible – the moment I am struck by a fresh breeze or feel rain on our face as we step outside, I’m grateful for the natural world even as I am glad to have a safe place to be sheltered from it when I choose. It is important to enjoy time out there every day.

But there is another reason I believe getting out into the world is important.

Working from home and not driving, it’s easy for my world to become incredibly small. I will continue to work to connect with others online and encourage others to do as well, but we need to do more than that – challenge yourself to talk to someone you wouldn’t likely to, and work to meet others face-to-face. Disagree on someone’s posts/blogs/etc.? Take them out for coffee.  It’s all too easy to get trapped in toxic rhetoric online, and infinitely freeing to meet somewhere neutral and discuss your opinions.

I’m still working on this.

May come back later with thoughts on citizen engagement, something I’ve been dwelling on more and more of late.