Simple City Connections in the Month of Love

Member Spotlight,


Here we are in February - the month of love! This time of year is a good reminder to show the people around us the love we have to offer. Whether in our personal or professional lives, these simple acts promise to help people feel connected, appreciated, and seen. 


My name is Sydney Forsell, I am an Account Manager at the SERVPRO of Shoreline/Woodinville & Seattle NW. Being born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, I’ve come to discover Seattle is known for all the rain, traffic, and being a very fast-paced society. But, by working in customer service for the last 10+ years, I’ve seen that we are surrounded by some of the biggest hearts a city can have. Though I am not anywhere close to perfect, wherever possible, I strive to find moments to show love every day. I work in the mitigation industry, where like you, the length of my to-do list is even longer than the number of people I interact with. Getting caught up in the 'to-do's' makes it easy to miss interacting with the talented, bright, and dedicated professionals in my industry and community. The following experiences continually remind me how impactful we can be on the world.


In the heart of the pandemic, I was able to experience one of the rarest examples of 'loving your neighbor'. While the whole world came to a pause for COVID-19, unfortunately, an unexpected fire, water, or biohazardous loss was still a daily occurrence. Completing these jobs while still protecting the health of customers and technicians was no small challenge. While amid these overwhelming circumstances, team members shared stories that recaptured the “why” behind our chosen employment. One by one, Servpro technicians shared stories where customers shared immense gratitude for the day-to-day services we provide. While it is normal to see the whole range of human emotions in stressful scenarios, this was different. These people were not reacting to the emergent trauma in their homes, but because they were witnessing human contact. A kind word, a smile, a conversation, all these things that had been taken from them by the pandemic. Just by showing a basic level of kindness, safety, and thoughtfulness, our team was able to help restore one of the most fundamental longings of humankind - a sincere moment of compassion from another person. Something, many of these customers had not experienced in weeks or months. Collectively, our eyes were opened to two realities. First, without small acts of love and kindness, the world seems to be a cold, lonesome place. Second, more importantly, we have tremendous power to impact the lives and daily experiences of the people around us.


Like many of you, a lot of things have changed for me post-pandemic. One of them is that I try to remind myself that addressing the need of homeowners through the process of mitigation is a privilege. I get a glimpse into what is going on in their lives and it reminds me of why I go to work every day. Because this job is not just for an income, it is to help anyone and everyone we encounter. I hope to always keep in mind how far a kind gesture can go in someone’s life.


We may not be in a pandemic anymore (thank heavens), but our world is still hungry for human compassion. Please join me in my quest to make our daily lives a little bit brighter. Don’t forget to love yourself, love your neighbor, and keep your smile as bright as possible. You’ll never know how many other smiles you might encourage to show.