Earlier this week, Thailand Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha surprised me with a special award for my contributions to Thailand and…
The Virus That Changed The World
Grit is everything. The person who is willing to endure the most suffering for his/her dreams is the one who is most likely to achieve them. It does not matter what it is, or what the goals are. The difference between success and failure in life is a very, very, very thin line. No matter who you are, life will eventually kick you in the ass at some point and make you question everything. What you do in those moments will dictate the trajectory of your life. It is always good to remember that winners never quit, and quitters never win. Never give up on the people and things that you love, especially your dreams. If we are unwilling to fight through the worst days of our lives, then we do not deserve the best days of our lives.
On March 11, the World Health Organization formally declared COVID-19 as a global pandemic.
To extinguish the recent growth of the coronavirus, the Singapore Government wisely ordered a partial lockdown of the country, whereby effective April 7th onwards, only essential services (such as food, healthcare, and transportation) are allowed to operate. Everyone has been ordered to stay home. Additionally, major countries (China, Thailand, Singapore, Australia, Russia, India, Vietnam, Japan, etc) have temporarily closed their borders. For the last several weeks, everything has been turned upside down around the world. Sports events, music concerts, festivals, funerals, weddings, and everything else have been canceled. Mosques and churches are closed. Panic buying has emptied supermarkets all over the world. Daily news coverage is only about the coronavirus and how it has ravaged families, communities, and economies all over the world. Refrigerated trucks for the dead are parked next to overcrowded hospitals in Spain, Italy, China, USA, and other countries. People wear masks and gloves on the streets. Stock markets have plummeted at unprecedented levels in speed and magnitude. In Japan, there has even been a remote university graduation ceremony via Skype for the graduating class of 2020. Globally, there are over 1,600,000 cases of COVID-19 and approximately 100,000 deaths in a span of just several weeks. And the virus continues to grow exponentially in most countries and the situation is far from under control. In fact, most of the entire world is locked down in their homes across 90 countries. Borders are closed. Airports are shut. Airlines are running out of cash. Businesses are on the brink, especially small businesses. And even the Tokyo Olympics has been postponed to 2021.
The irony is that families are spending more time together than ever before, humanity is united across borders, and the world will record its single largest annual drop in pollution in history in 2020. It is almost as if Mother Nature is telling us that we have lost our way and that we need to re-examine everything about our way of life. It is time for pause. It is time for rest. It is time for reflection.
We are living through the most extraordinary of times. I know everyone is suffering around the world right now, but let us remember that we are all fighting together. No one is alone. In many ways, this tragic experience is teaching us yet again that humanity is ONE. We all love, laugh, cry, and dream. Let us always be kind, empathetic, and compassionate to each other, but even more so in these times. The good news is that these short-term restrictions will undoubtedly slow down the coronavirus, and flatten the curve. To be clear though, it needs all of us to work together with vigilance. The most important thing that we can do as individuals is to follow the strict orders of our respective governments and to practice social distancing, good hygiene, and telecommuting. The virus cannot spread if we all stay at home. It really is as simple as that. Let us join hands in this fight and stand united as ONE. Let the power of the beautiful human spirit conquer all! #WeAreONE
Chatri Sityodtong is a self-made entrepreneur and lifelong martial artist from Thailand. His rags-to-riches life story has inspired millions around the world on BBC News, CNN, Financial Times, Bloomberg TV, CNBC, Channel NewsAsia, and other major media. He is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of ONE Championship, Asia’s largest global sports media property in history with a global broadcast to over 2.7 billion potential viewers across 150+ countries around the world. He is also the star of the Asian edition of The Apprentice, the award-winning, global reality TV series. Forbes most recently selected Sityodtong as one of Asia’s next generation tycoons. Sityodtong was also named “Asia’s King of Martial Arts” by the Financial Times and the “2nd Most Powerful Person in Sports in Asia” by FOX Sports. He is also an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at INSEAD, Europe’s top business school. Inducted recently into the Black Belt Hall of Fame, Sityodtong is a Kru in Muay Thai and a Purple Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Sityodtong holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from Tufts University.