Working in the Midst of All This

It’s a challenge to find some kind of equilibrium in a world that feels ever more unstable and out of control. Sometimes it feels like we’re living on a razor’s edge.

We are, of course, only experiencing the latest in a long line of difficult periods in human history. Yet somehow this feels bigger. Perhaps because the problems are global in nature or maybe because we have access to so much information.

But then I think that could just be my perception because I am living in this particular time and can’t begin to comprehend the plagues and wars that ravaged previous generations.

Either way, it’s very unsettling.

I think it’s strange how I am able to get up and go about my business after something tragic happens. I show up. Go to work. Sit on conference calls with other people who, I suppose, must also be wondering why no one is talking about what just happened. It feels surreal. Whatever we’re discussing in this meeting seems infinitely smaller and less important than what’s happening elsewhere, but we press on.

I guess it gives us some sense of normalcy. That life goes on. We continue to bend our will against the tide of discouraging news and allow the day to day tasks to take up the space that might be consumed by fear or worry. We need the counterweight of work to help us find our balance. Something to keep us going.

For that, I’m grateful.

I tried to develop something interesting or inspirational to write about this week but found it difficult to focus. At work, my mind was drawn to the stories, the lives, the questions, the threats and the fighting between various tribes and ideologies even in the midst of so much pain.

“Does everyone else feel this way?”, I wondered. It seems like this stuff has to be gnawing at the minds of everyone we work with, even those not directly affected. Somewhere inside we’re all sharing the sadness, the questions, the worry. We find different ways of holding it and dealing with it but it’s there. And lately, it seems to be accumulating at a ridiculous pace.

I’m pretty sure I’m not alone.

This is definitely a good time to show some extra kindness. To recognize that everyone around us is also working through a personal struggle and trying to maintain some sense of normalcy, at least on the outside.

We can listen with a little more patience.

Show a little more understanding.

Offer a little more encouragement.

Give a little more time.

Because every little bit helps.

Each organization deals with things differently but wouldn’t it be great if we could create more workplaces that serve as a refuge instead of just keeping us busy or distracted. Places that help us heal, become stronger and encourage our efforts to change things for the better.

Seems like a lot of potential in that idea.

I’m sure some are doing it.

I wish there were more.

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