Thanksgiving weekend/break was 5 days of solo parenting for Team Sample. Both of our pandemic babysitters are out of commission. One awaiting COVID test results and the other taking a leave of absence after losing a family member. Our family feels like a beautiful island with mostly virtual bridges. I’m realizing how much this island has changed since April.
I’m a drummer. I play an African set called dun-duns from Guinea. As a beginning drummer, I struggled to have enough energy to play for one hour. I would inevitably fatigue after 15-20 minutes and then sweat would bead, muscles would cramp and I’d pray my way to the end of dance class.
As I grew in skill, I learned that the looser I held the drum sticks, the faster I could play.
I learned how breathing and relaxing gave me more stamina (eventually I learned how to dance while I played). The longest I ever played was for 2 hours straight. It was a combination of conditioning and comfort with the rhythms.
On our most recent holiday stretch, I steeled myself for the sweating and cramps of 5 days of isolated parenting. What I found instead was a comfort with the rhythm and a new level of conditioning for pandemic parenting. It certainly looks different, a lot looser than in April. So my kid is chasing the dog. I’m reading the paper and drinking coffee instead of refereeing. So she’s pulling all of the floss out of it’s roll, I’m still flossing my teeth. I can see that I’ve learned how to let things go, how to breathe a bit more and no surprise, my stamina has increased!
What does this look like for business?
Being looser in business means that instead of reigning in my calls to strictly business, there’s more chat about the context. We all are experiencing loss and grief and it impacts how we show up. I’m finding it essential to check in on a personal level when I speak to others. Amid project specific questions, clients and I are talking more about the climate, economy, and the future.
This loosening helps me create more energy. I’m spending less time painting the lines on the road, and more energy tuning the engine.
I hope your week is graced with fluidity and flow.