Skip to content

The power of light: Reflections from the 2024 solar eclipse

April 16, 2024

by Jana Cinnamon

Power of Light

Like many of our fellow Americans, my husband, daughter, and I traveled to the path of totality for the recent solar eclipse. Our destination was Niagara Falls; the cool mist of the whitewater hung in the air as we expectantly gazed skyward.

As the moon began to creep in front of the sun, I found it odd the sky wasn’t darkening. Even when only a sliver of sun remained, it still felt like daylight. Finally, when the sun became totally blocked, darkness came upon us in an instant. We cheered and applauded along with the other eclipse watchers, marveling at the celestial phenomenon we had just witnessed. I stood in awe as the sun—and warm daylight—swiftly reemerged.

Isn’t it crazy how much warmth and brightness even a tiny bit of light can provide?

As we traveled home on Tuesday, I kept coming back to this thought. I’ve always been drawn to the idea of light and the measurable difference it can make. I love that we’ve embraced the power of light here at Abdo, both through our branding (our tagline is “Lighting the path forward”) and our culture. To me, the eclipse’s stark contrast of light and dark turned this power into a visceral feeling.

Here are a few things I’ve been reflecting on since my eclipse-chasing adventure.

Being in the dark doesn’t feel great.

At the peak of the eclipse, the temperature dropped at our already chilly viewing spot. Being in the dark was not a pleasant feeling! In Minnesota, we know this all too well: we’re in the dark for months during our long winters. Some of us even experience seasonal affective disorder, as it can be hard to live with less light.

When refreshing our firm’s brand in 2021, we gave a lot of thought to the discomfort of darkness. Our clients are experts in what they know and do. But they’re not experts in things like accounting, finance, tax implications, and audits. When they have to address these aspects of their operations, it can feel confusing, complex, and uncomfortable.

It can be hard to move forward when you have to navigate your way through complexities—much like when you’re walking in the dark.

This is where we have the power and privilege to help. By sharing our knowledge and expertise with our clients, we can shine a light on these areas of darkness. The unknowns become known and the path becomes illuminated, giving our clients the clarity and confidence they need to take the next step.

Be the light.

As I mentioned earlier, even a little bit of light can make a difference. (And yes, I know it sounds cliché, but it’s true.) Think about being in a pitch-dark room and lighting a match. The tiny flame’s warmth and comfort is palpable.

This is something we regularly put into practice at Abdo. Each Monday, we have a firm-wide “Stand Up Meeting,” which is when everyone comes together (physically or virtually) for a 15-minute update on new employees, happenings, and the like.

At the end of every meeting, I do a sign-off. During the pandemic, it was “remember to take care of yourself and others.” This year I’ve changed it to “go be a light for someone else.”

What does it mean to be a light?

I encourage our staff members to take five minutes, before they log into email or start client work, to be a light for someone else—right in the moment. This could be sending a text or Teams message, making a phone call, or writing a note to offer encouragement, support, or appreciation.

At its core, the phrase “go be a light” is a call for us to consider how we show up for our coworkers, clients, and community. We all have the power to be a light for someone else. We also can use our light to find the good and then acknowledge and celebrate it.

Being a light at Abdo also means using your light(bulb) to spark something; to be an inspiration or share an idea. In other words, to let your light shine rather than keeping it to yourself.

Will you be a light or a shadow?

Every day we have a choice: We can be a light or a shadow in this world. We may not think our light is enough, but even a tiny sliver—even a spark—can bring warmth, reassurance, inspiration, and joy to someone else.

I’ve always known this, but experiencing the eclipse allowed me to feel it in a way I never had. I’m grateful to work for a firm that recognizes the power of light, and I hope we can be a light for you, too.

Click here to learn more about how Abdo harnesses the power of light.


Meet the Expert

Jana Cinnamon

As Chief Operating Officer, Jana helps lead the day-to-day operations of Abdo.

Contact via email
Connect on LinkedIn

Looking for more?

Find more insights & resources

Discover More

Abdo Accelerate: Investing in people and our future

Now in its eleventh year, Abdo Accelerate has evolved into...

Change Management Series: Is Your Team Ready for Change?

In this first article in our Change Management Series, we’re...

Scroll To Top