March 31, 2020
Human beings are messy.
Social isolation week 3. It’s a discovery about human behavior. It’s a discovery about ourselves.
So much to learn about how we navigate through a crisis. Our coping skills. Our ability to keep focus in the face of much human suffering and despair.
And it matters. How we cope and what we learn. I discover I can offer and have a greater capacity to offer compassion to others. Extend grace. Than to myself.
While shifting to this new work world my standards and expectations for myself are high. Week one, shift. Pivot. Be creative. Be resilient. Evolve. All the while coaching others to extend understanding, patience, kindness.
I expect myself to create and build immediately what “previously” I would have allowed weeks to accomplish. These high standards have always been in place (thank you mom and dad for teaching us to expect the best from ourselves), but they now shift into hyper mode.
I wonder if I were managing direct reports right now, as I did for decades….how would I be showing up? I hope in a way that would be reflective of my values, dignity, compassion, learning. But then again, I was also so focused on goals, results, productivity, performance.
Like the pictures above, can these two exist in harmony? To know and understand the different facets of ourselves takes reflection. The ability to confront reality with honesty. The ability to know that we are complex and sometimes messy human beings, who show up differently from one minute to the next.
Can we extend compassion and calm at the same time we create accountability and expect focused performance? Can we work our way through the messiness that this balance will create both for us and for others?
I believe we can. But I also know it will take mindfulness, transparency and trust. In my last post I noted that leadership has not been cancelled. Now more than ever how we show up as leaders, matters.
How we show up for others. And maybe even more importantly, how we show up for ourselves.
My hope for you as a leader is to find this balance. Find a place of compassion for others, grounded in grace for you. Keep focus on the work to be done, while honoring that it may be a messy process. It’s okay. We’ll learn. And laugh. And evolve.