Now is the time for greater influence and impact through action. Consciousness, contemplation, and discussion through this season of chaos and isolation have elevated our understanding of the systematic flaws in our economic engines, institutions, and our relationship to the planet. We’ve been forced into reflection and become more aware.
Awareness is a mere pleasantry if not put into collaborative and unified action. With all major streams of our lives disrupted, some crippled, and others devastated, the great question is, do we have the appetite and strength to take action?
Are we ready?
Clearly, we have crossed the chasm into a new era. Value is being rediscovered for some and redefined for others. Our purpose and values have been exposed and tested as all facets of lives and livelihood paused and intertwined for an extended period. We all felt the need to assess our interpretation of meaning, and envision what the next chapter will hold.
What will change? What has changed? What do we believe to be true? What’s important? What choices will we make?
If everything in the past era was working, there would be no need to reevaluate and choose to create new. There would be no compelling reason to change anything; to fix what was broken. We would simply enact a plan to restore the previous state. We know this not the case. Pursuing a restoration path will be a grave mistake.
Somehow, we cling to the illusion of normal. “Back to normal” or “new normal” are cringe-worthy statements that provoke a guttural rejection for me. I’m not certain ‘normal’ even exists, but I am certain I am not that, and I’ve never experienced it.
We now understand how intricately connected we are. The labels and false boundaries that divided us were far less important than the commonality. Our opportunity to unite became heightened. We discovered the importance of intellectual agility, as our emotions came to the surface and we operated in a constant state of uncertainty, realizing that resisting change was not an available choice.
We discovered our resiliency, our gratitude, and priorities.
The opportunity and critical steps now are to progress and create positive change with the understanding gained from this experience. The pressure valve will release for us personally, yet we have the responsibility to apply pressure against a return to status quo.
A few things to consider and remember:
- You own the narrative for your own life
- Your values matter and you are worthy, so align with your beliefs
- A growth mindset is necessary, which is a process and practice and choice
And here are some ideas to set the foundation for moving forward:
- Write down your thoughts and experiences
- What was challenging
- What was good
- What surprised you about yourself/others
- Biggest lesson
- What missed/not missed
- Understand different perspectives
- Discuss with teammates
- What was their experience/perspective/perception
- What are the common beliefs to carry forward
- Discuss with teammates
- Capture ideas for improvement
- Plans, actions, programs, processes
- Expectations, measures, and communication rhythms
- What can you/team stop doing
- What can you do more
- Be expressive with strength in communication
- Share these learnings and feelings openly
We can slide back or move forward. It is a choice. It requires intention and commitment. Your experience is real and valuable. It is also different in some ways than others. The invitation to explore all of our varied perspectives, understanding that even in a situation that is the same for us all, we experience it differently, is one of the key foundations for creating healthier, happier, and more inclusive and productive environments.
It’s Time. Let’s go forward with clarity in vision and resolve to be better.