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Taking action, “DOING”, having an impact can make us feel like we have a modicum of control in times of uncertainty and confusion, such as in this surreal moment we’re living right now. Our beloved wineries, restaurants, hotels – and other sectors too – have already been hit very hard by the Coronavirus pandemic. We all know people who suddenly face the risk of losing their jobs and many of us are in isolation, working from home.

So, what exactly can we DO? What action can we take to help ourselves shake off the feelings we may be dealing with in pandemic-driven isolation: helplessness, uncertainty, fear, loneliness, frustration. And what can we DO to help those in need?

How to Support Local Wineries?

I’m advising my winery clients to reach out to members – as some already have, offering free shipping and/or special discounts. In addition, ask for help. Ask your Wine Club members or newsletter subscribers to please order more wine now to help you out in these lean times of closed tasting rooms. Many will be more than happy to do so. After all, it’s helpful to have a good supply of wine on hand for a potential fortnight of quarantine.

Have a look at BC Wine Institute’s guidelines and protocols for wineries.

How to Support Local Restaurants?

What can we do to help our restaurants? How about purchasing gift cards to use down the road? Some restaurants have even explored different forms of crowdfunding with larger amounts than the usual gift cards. These could be donations, or in exchange for credit. If there are restaurants you frequent that feel like family and you can’t imagine your life without them, now is the time to put some love on them. They need our help now more than ever; some of them are on life support already.

How to Support Each Other?

Another suggestion I’ll offer is to simply reach out to “check in” with friends, colleagues and contacts. Yesterday I received an email from someone who normally writes to me strictly for business purposes. The relationship is cordial and he’s a very nice person, but we are (albeit friendly) work colleagues. Yesterday, however, he sent out a personal note to our group of colleagues to express his own discomfort and let us know he was writing to ask us how we were feeling and to offer his openness for a conversation. His thoughtful gesture was powerful. Breaking through that imagined restriction of our professional roles to express concern, human-to-human, touched me and provided comfort and solidarity. So please don’t discount the value of your call or a message!

I’d be glad to discuss these ideas and explore others to help offer my support in these tough times. Please reach out to me if you’d like to schedule a strategy call or brainstorming session – or if you just want to talk about how you’re feeling about what’s going on in this surreal moment we’re living through. I’m here to help!

We’ll get through this.