What we can do!

March 25th, 2020

We are all having to adapt rapidly to many challenges during this difficult time.

I have to admit that I have been struggling to come to terms with what is happening and the impact on all our lives. I am also worrying about family and friends who are vulnerable and fearful of what more is to come. I have had a few days of “gloom and doom” and moments when the news was overwhelming; a couple of long dog walks helped me to gain a bit of perspective and to start to take the advice that I have often given to others. So here is what I am now trying to do (with varying degrees of success!).

Worry about the things I can control, not the things I can’t.

I can’t control the restrictions or coronavirus; I can control how effectively I use this time and how I limit the impact of both by:-

  • Doing some of the things that I have been putting off for far too long. I have already re-organised my office and disposed (safely) a huge amount of  ”stuff” that I have been hording unnecessarily.
  • We can do the decorating that we have been putting off for months (possibly years!).
  • Other projects include, doing some gardening, continuing to learn French online, exercise as much as I can, engage in some photography challenges, edit my thousands of photos, master Photoshop and play online scrabble with my youngest son.
  • Focus on what I can do business wise. Some projects are ongoing and being delivered differently, other things have been cancelled and/or postponed. Whether they will happen at some point is beyond my control. What I can do is focus on how we can provide services in different ways. I can also do the things that slip down the “to do list”. For example, writing blogs, doing online webinars, keeping in proper contact with colleagues and clients, updating the website and expanding my knowledge.
  • Support family and friends by maintaining the best contact that I can. I am now ringing close family daily and phoning (rather than texting or messaging) friends. We have set up a family WhatsApps with everyone so that we can share and keep in contact more frequently that we might do otherwise.
  • Follow the government advice and encourage everyone else to do so and make sure that the vulnerable are getting what they need.

Think about the things that I am thankful for.

I very much appreciate that we are in a much better situation than many others.

  • Our four legged friend is helping to keep us fit and healthy; he is very happy with longer walks and having company all day. We are also lucky that we have lovely walks on our doorstep.
  • All my family are safe and we are supporting each other.
  • I have a great support network of friends and colleagues; we may be connecting in different ways now but we are all there for each other.
  • I can take pleasure in the outside world around us; we can get out into a garden, enjoy the sunshine, wonder at the birds singing and appreciate the garden springing into life.
  • Appreciate the extra time that we have and the chance to slow down.

Think about how things will be in 12 months, 3 years and 5 years. 

One way or another this will end; we don’t yet know when or how but my hope is that we will not forget the very hard lessons learnt and that the world will be a better place in that:-

  • We will continue to appreciate what is really important rather than all the unnecessary activity we tend to rush around doing and all the stuff we acquire.
  • Appreciate and properly value the professions that really matter; the NHS, all health and  care workers and emergency services, teachers and public services etc.
  • Better understand the damage we do by travelling the world in the way we and how we can reverse/limit climate change so that we do not lose the improvements in air quality or the clear waters that have appeared in venice. See here
  • Prove that remote working can work well in many situations and that staff can be trusted if employers trust them. As Ernest Hemingway said “The only way to know whether you can trust people is to trust them.”
  • Remember all the wonderful acts of kindness of many people and continue to be kinder to each other.

I still have moments when I feel overwhelmed and struggle to stay positive but I am working on it. Take care and stay safe.

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The report was very professional, it dealt with all the issues raised and was particularly thorough. It clearly took the time to fully understand all of the issues and background. It was complex but the report really helped to break it down and I’m hoping we can progress in a positive manner following the recommendations.

Group HR Manager, Energy Sector |

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