As the novelty and panic have worn off, the feeling of isolation is settling in. It is becoming clear that our way of life pre-coronavirus is over—at least for the foreseeable future. As humans, it is not in our nature to socially distance ourselves from our colleagues, clients, friends and family for an extended period.
Having our daily lives shift from working in offices with childcare readily available to working from home – or not working at all – with schools cancelled indefinitely is weighing heavy on our hearts and minds. As the hustle and bustle of our normal days has ceased because of this pandemic, it is easy to get wrapped up in the anxiety of the uncertainty that remains. It is vital that we stay connected despite the continued impact of COVID-19. Now is the time to reach out to help ease some of these feelings for ourselves and others personally and professionally.
Connect with Your Colleagues
Reach out to your co-workers to have a one-on-one call. While an all-company call is helpful for business purposes, people are feeling emotional right now and having a more intimate conversation may be helpful for you as well as them. Many people are feeling like they are alone in their worries and anxieties, when this is unlikely to be the case.
Your colleagues are all dealing with different challenges, from having to homeschool their kids to feeling completely isolated because they live alone to going through an incredibly emotionally taxing time because their family has been personally affected by this crisis. This is a great opportunity to deepen relationships and support each other.
Connect with Your Clients
While it may seem counter-intuitive to connect with clients that aren’t able to give you business right now, this is exactly the right time to do that. This is an opportunity to build relationships and to let people know that you are there to help or answer any questions that they may have. This is the time to be a thought leader and to share insight into what is happening in your industry and to provide information that they may not be able to find anywhere else.
Even if your clients are not able to use your services, there will be a time where they will be, and they will remember that you were there to support them. Clients need to know that your relationship is not purely transactional and that while you appreciate their business, you appreciate them and can also offer value to them beyond your typical services. This is the perfect time to strengthen relationships and set yourself apart from others.
Connect with Your Friends and Family
Prior to this pandemic, we were all living our own separate lives. Many of us were swept up in the whirlwind of our daily lives and it was hard to get away from work, your kids or your routine to have a lot of face time with family and friends. Our interactions were limited to the occasional FaceTime or check in on social media.
This pandemic has created an environment where virtual hangouts are socially acceptable and are more than welcomed. Many of us are craving connection and support, and given the fact that most of us are home right now 24/7, it is the perfect opportunity to take advantage and reach out to those we love the most.
Connect with Yourself
As our lives have come to a crawl, this is an ideal time for reflection. Prior to this pandemic, most of us spent our days constantly on the move. From the daily commute to taking our kids to various activities, our days were filled from start to finish.
As these things have been stripped away, it is a time to assess your own well-being and identify opportunities to better yourself. Whether it be finding a better way to organize your life, learning something new or discovering ways to center your mind, you have an opportunity to take advantage of the fact that the world has slowed.
As our futures are being mapped into these ambiguous “phases,” it is necessary to connect with each other and ourselves in ways that we may not have thought to before. For your own sanity and well-being, proactively finding human connection will provide the strength you need to make your way through this.