I have, like many others, had a very interesting time over the past 6 weeks, since we went into ‘Lock Down’. The week of 23rd March started with all my work coming to a complete stop, as being a relational coach and consultant, my work is mainly face to face. My husband had to come to terms with his plans for a gradual reduction of working hours, as he approaches retirement, having to go on hold as we re-assessed our financial position. Our son, who had been planning to study flat out and sit A-Levels followed by a jammed packed end of year and his time at school, coming to a sharp end, unable to complete this very important ‘right of passage’.
It was a strange and uncomfortable week to say the least. The following week I gave into just ‘being with it’, noticing that when I don’t feel responsible for controlling or fixing, it is such a relief to ‘let go’. I was able to appreciate that, unlike a lot of people, I could just focus on family time and cycling to visit my horse and walking the dog once a day, as my time outside our home to exercise.
I then received a call from my lovely colleague, Jan Bloomfield, asking if I would like to join her in supporting the planning for the East of England Nightingale hospital. I said yes, and was there one hour later. I was immediately thrown into working long days in the NHS East of England HQ in Cambridge, where I have worked 18 years ago – very strange! At the end of this very intense week our brief had completely changed, we moved to working from home and everything I did, like so many others was on line. I noticed how uncomfortable this felt, believing, backed up by the neuroscience, that our emotional centres (Amygdala and Limbic system), are determined by our senses and being ‘present’ together. I also realised that until I felt I was adding value my motivation was very low, helped by knowledge of Motivational Maps and the amazing Bevis Moynan.
I also noticed that when people are thrown together with the same motivation and purpose they can do great things, but it takes good leadership and if we don’t spend time supporting leaders, they will not be able to provide the right environment, becoming burnt out and lacking the resilience to lead with the emotional intelligence and compassion required.
The attached are reflections and thoughts from my time working over the past 4 weeks in this team and the needs of leaders as they struggle to maintain their emotional and psychological resilience .