As I reflected on week four, I found it interesting that I waited to do so until Easter Sunday. As the daughter of a preacher, one might assume that I am religious, but I consider myself more spiritual than adherent to any one religious philosophy. Today, however, I find such meaning in the symbolism this holiday brings around life, death, and rebirth – all of which are keenly prominent in our current world and reality. These same symbols coincidentally showed up as key themes in many of my experiences in week four of working remotely.
1. We Are All Suffering and Experiencing Loss
This reality really sunk in this week as I learned of people I know personally who have lost loved ones as a result of this crisis. The isolation that accompanies this spatial distancing demand - and yes, I choose to call it “spatial” instead of “social” as physical separation does not have to mean social separation – can create an overwhelming darkness and depression for some. And, for many, job losses, furloughs, financial uncertainty, and even breakdown within families are contributing to a deepening sense of loss and fear. There have been over 23,000 deaths in our country alone and more than 100,000 world-wide, and many of those families did not get to say goodbye to their loved ones. This reality I know too well with the sudden loss of my son just 17 months ago to the day, this past Sunday. My heart and compassion are with all these families and loved ones experiencing this grave loss.
This pandemic is happening and we must face these losses head on and surrender to them. We are all meeting death at some level through this experience and while death rarely gets discussed, we allow it to run our fears. It is said that true transformation cannot come without death. The ascension process always involves a death - of our old self, of our old identity, of what could have been. And with that death, a rebirth – a new, more present outlook and one that is open to possibility and is curious about the future, not fearful of it. So what if there is an underlying gift to us all? At some level, looking for a silver lining amongst the ominous clouds seems so cliché and yet, from my personal experience, I choose to embrace it.
2. There Is Access To Energy and Possibilities that Lie Beyond Our Five Senses
Today I consciously choose to be bold and to put a concept out there that I believe to be true. We live in this three-dimensional reality, and we are conditioned by our five senses. As we grow into adulthood, we develop our own set of beliefs and world views about how life is and should be. This is our paradigm, our reality. That said, there is an opportunity to go beyond what it is we see, hear, touch, taste, and smell, and to open ourselves up to the sixth sense and beyond in order to access our intuition and imagination. All week long in my conversations with people, I experienced an openness, a yearning, and a craving to see beyond what exists in the present moment. This does not mean that we are not hurting in our current reality. If we focus, however, on the energy we put out into the world - starting with our thoughts, our emotions, our words, and our actions – being filled with LOVE and an invitation to welcome the unknown, we can shift our energy and the energy of those around us. This in turn impacts and influences the energy that transforms humanity.
This work takes a desire and a willingness to reflect on our limiting beliefs, assumptions, and existing patterns that no longer serve us. We all have the opportunity to develop emotional intelligence by looking at anything that triggers us and consciously choosing how we want to respond. As leaders, we are called, now more than ever before, to be with our people in our vulnerable, authentic state. We are learning the importance of connection in a new way, beyond the metrics, P&L statements, and strategy. We are instead focusing on the connection of being human together in this new reality in order to create a new paradigm. We are wired for survival; it is in our DNA and evidenced by the many crises - pandemics, wars, famines, etc.- we, as humans, have emerged from throughout our history. We will come out of this different and stronger.
I have many more observations and learnings but I believe this is a lot to digest for now. I’ve included a link to one of my meditations if you care to listen to it – it will help you quiet the mind and be present in the current moment.