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  • Abbie Cole Hillis

The System is Failing

The System is Failing.

Anyone else just feel like the systems everywhere around them are failing? I sure do. I have spent the last couple weeks processing a hell of a lot of things going on. I launched a podcast series with hopes it would change the gymnastics culture and start a conversation that people are not having. And a half-way through it, a man was killed by white COPS who chose to allow this to happen. And yet another international conversation broke out about how racist America is and how much we still need to change. Again, having conversations that have not really been had in the past.

I have ALWAYS said: communication is the root to all problems, and the key to success. What I don’t say, and I will start adding is communication without respect and empathy is NOT communicating. I used to yell to communicate. Ask Hillis. He will tell you. And then he worked with me and taught me how to actually communicate; which is active listening. You have to have empathy and respect to actively listen.

You have to be willing to hear the things that others are saying even if they disagree with your story or viewpoint.

I am breaking a little inside because so many people are refusing to communicate; to listen; to respect; to empathize; to understand; and to merely treat each other the way we all wanted and deserve to be treated.

COVID was a slap in the face to a lot of people for a lot of reasons. I believe we need to slow down and appreciate the things we take for granted: our homes, our teachers, our nurses, our doctors, daycare professionals, garbage men and women, our jobs, and so much more.

Yet, directly following processing all of these emotions from quarantine and the changes it brought unexpectedly into life, we are stuck divided yet again. Is it really easier to hate each other? Is it really easier to disagree? Is it really easier to call someone a liar? Or a cheater?

It’s not. It is actually quite easy to just S.T.O.P. and listen. And, quite frankly, to lean on one another and support each other; regardless of race, sexuality, religion, and the list goes on. At some point, we have to stop fighting. Especially when we are relying on a system that is SO incredibly broken. How can we change a system if we spend all of our energy fighting? Mad? Angry?

Please step into those tough conversations. But do it with grace. And do it with the goal that you will become a better person by listening.

I, myself, will be spending the next week listening for those that want to take the conversation off of social media and into real actual conversations that aren’t through hiding behind a computer or phone screen. Dare you to join me.


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