I have offered myself as a resource for clients and others as we all generate ourselves in this new reality. What follows are some thoughts and things that I have discovered and seen as I listen and coach people who feel stuck. The intention is that these insights contribute to your power, ability and freedom to be resilient in our new world…..
- I am not for myself a picture of the perfect pandemic participant. I am beset by mood swings and uncertainty. I find myself hoping that it is all just a dream and I will awaken. It will then be as my life was two months ago. I find myself at times frantic to book work, change things, and make something happen. What I am discovering is that the more that I can be with whatever I am feeling and thinking the more at peace I am. What I mean is that the more that I can hang out with my thoughts and feelings and not resist them, not react to them and that I can just let them be…….these thoughts, feelings, mood swings can then let me be…..what ensues is more freedom to act and more peace of mind.
- When coaching and supporting people I have found that a critical first step is to get into their world. What do I mean by this? One needs to find out what is it that they are dealing with. Work is just one of a series of situations and circumstances that are critical to them. It is important as a real example to hear that their mother-in-law is a nurse who is now mandated to the ICU where she is inexperienced and frightened. It is important to hear about the guilt that some have that they are working and others are not. You need to hear the fear of hugging your boyfriend, the banker because he has been with people all day and you have been by yourself with your computer. I could go on and I think you get it. You need to listen and give their world existence and that they know you are present to their world.
- One of the things I have observed in coaching people in the pandemic is that one of the traps that they are typically in is that they have yet to arrive to the pandemic. What I mean is that they are wishing it was different, resisting the way it is, and fighting our new realities. Until you can get and be with the new reality and uncertainties that we are dealing with on a daily basis they will be immobilized by fear and anxiety. For myself when I, at the end of a month of my resistance, got that we are all are in a new reality with new rules and new possibilities I felt my body shift and relax as I finally arrived.
- A metaphor that I use to invite people to get into reality is saying; “we have to get that two months ago we were standing on dry land. Now we find ourselves in cold water that is up to our necks.” This is our new reality for everybody. Until you get that you are up to your neck in cold water with no prospects of getting out of it any time soon, you will have very little power in dealing with it. Once you arrive, possibility and opportunity arise. However, until you get the change of paradigm and reality you are left with resistance, anxiety and passivity.
- Being on dry land has opportunities and possibilities. So does being in water up to your neck have possibilities and opportunities. They are different. Once you have arrived to the pandemic then you can begin to explore what is possible given the circumstances that we are all dealing with.
- I have been so inspired by my clients, friends, and acquaintances who are present and here in the pandemic. One got married virtually with no rings and virtual participants in Brazil; from a park no less. Another has pivoted from making displays for Walmart to working with fabric and making face shields – this is providing jobs in Chicago. Another has made mental health professionals available at no charge to her employees. One is delivering meals to seniors. I have had a Trader Joes employee tell me that they are getting people to smile and that given their masks he knows that they are smiling by reading their eyes. Companies are going to incredible lengths to support their employees and customers. I get glimpses at the heroism that we are all displaying during this time and that is uplifting and worth living into.
So these are some thoughts and things I have discovered in this adventure. I look forward to hearing what you are discovering.
Keep causing and creating,