Recently, my exceptionally talented and successful friend, Jennifer E. Goldman, launched a video series on LinkedIn called “2 Minutes with Joe.” For 120 seconds (give or take) every day, Jenn sips her coffee (the Joe in the title) and talks about an issue that’s on her mind.

Jenn and “Joe.”  Click on the picture to visit Resonance, Jenn’s management consulting firm for nonprofits.

In her very first episode, Jenn decided to talk about the three words she never wants to hear again:

back to normal.

Instead, she urged viewers to change it to:

back to the future.

I couldn’t agree more and I second her request.

Normal is a setting on the dryer. It’s like plain yogurt. (Blech! How does anyone eat that stuff?) I’m not normal; never have been. I’ll be damned if I’m going back to normal now.

Nope. I’m going back to the future. Or more specifically, as Jenn says, back to planning for and looking forward to the future. And you know me; I can’t just plan. I have to act. And so I have.

For starters, I got married. 

In February, I married the man I intend to spend the rest of my life with and we got married in the only place we want to spend our future together: Naples, Florida. And then we bought a place there. You can’t see it, but there’s a lake and a pool right outside that window. (Best part: we’re three minutes from the beach!)

My future though, isn’t the only one I’ve gotten back to planning for.

For far too long I’ve put off doing my older son’s application for Medicaid. (Why? Fear. Have you ever seen one of those things? It’s like a research project… for a science class… Do you know how well I did in science? Now you understand the fear.) But, having discovered a Medicaid-related program he’d really, REALLY benefit from if he had Medicaid, I dove in. I found every single solitary piece of information requested. I got every single solitary signature requested. By the time I was done I felt like a) I should get an “A” from some unseen teacher, and b) I also deserve at least three credits for the course I’ve imagined! I was so excited to drop it off I took a selfie. It took a full 30-days to gather everything and no, I don’t know yet if he’s been approved, but I’m feeling confident. And when that happens, he’ll be free to have a career – and earn a real, live income – like the rest of us.

(The Medicaid program I’m referring to is called Medicaid Works and I think it’s worth looking into if your loved one receives a benefit from Social Security and is concerned about going above the number of hours he or she is permitted to work each week.)

I’m relatively certain that, like my life, yours has been on hold since last March. I’m also relatively certain you’re as tired of it as I am. I feel like the “finish line” is soclose I can see it and I have to tell myself to hang on just a little longer. So, that’s what I do. I literally talk to myself and say,

“Suz, hang on. You’ve gotten this far, you can make it the rest of the way.”

It works really well except for when I forget I’m in public. Apologies, Food Lion shoppers!

I’m hanging on and I’m focused not on going back to normal, but on going back to planning for and looking forward to the future. Thanks Jenn, for putting it that way. And for being cool with my borrowing your awesome idea and using it as a jumping off point for this post!

For more of Jenn’s brilliance, take a peek at her LinkedIn profile, the many expert solutions and services she provides her clients, and videos that, while they’re not “2 Minutes with Joe” they’re just as great!