Posted by Philip Archer
on 1 May 2020
Who would have thought we would see the world change so dramatically that none of us remains immune to the impact of COVID-19. Whilst the pandemic has caused us all significant disruption to our daily lives, on a personal level, within the workplace, and at Rotary, we as Rotarians, are fortunate to still be able to continue what we do bestproviding service to our communities, albeit at a distance.
There is no doubt that we are working differently by observing social distancing and being vigilant about washing our hands and keeping our homes and workplaces as clean as possible. Many of us may be feeling the impact of restrictions with travel and at home, as we all take responsibility for "flattening the curve".
There are many things we can all do to keep ourselves energized in all areas of our lives by taking a leadership approach through this time of crisis. Even if you are not in a leadership role, you can still be a leader at Rotary, in your workspace, and even at home. No matter what your role is, you are performing in it because you are considered a leader and expert in what you deliver, and there is no better time to demonstrate your expertise and show leadership qualities than through a time of crisis.
Here are some ideas on how you can influence Rotary's mission of providing service above self:
Be mindful of those around you. Everyone is experiencing some level of change right now. Take the time to listen, to show empathy and to get to know those around you. Be understanding. Be supportive. When you focus on others, you tend to rise above your own issues.
Build morale by being positive. Every single person within any group impacts on the next by what they say and do, no matter what their role. Getting caught up in negativity is a choice. Instead choose to be positive. You will be surprised how much more satisfying your day will be, and how this will also impact on others.
If something is bothering you, decide who can help influence a solution or provide the right advice and talk to that person. There is nothing to be gained by complaining to people who can't do anything about your issue, or are unlikely to be able to give you good advice. Doing so, only adds to their stress load, and brings their morale down, as well as yours.
Use your initiative and be a team player. Being a team member means collaborating with and supporting those around you so that the team as a whole remains cohesive, productive and positive. Ask yourself what you can do to help others when you have the time. When you do something good for others, you feel good too.
Build relationships and provide the best service to others. In Rotary, if you are not providing service directly to our community, you are providing service to someone who is. At this time when people generally have some level of anxiety, it is the time to build deeper trust with those around you. You don't need a reason to pick up the phone to someone and genuinely ask how that person is doing, especially if you are sincere in your care. It's easy to build good relationships in good times, but in challenging times, you have the opportunity to build better than good relationships. You can build trust.
Stay focused on Rotary's mission. It's certainly easy to lose focus during these times when the world is in crisis. However, we all have a role to play and we are fortunate to be part of an organization that is making a difference. Focus on this big picture, be the person who reminds everyone else of this mission and help turn conversations towards better ways of delivering the best possible outcomes.
Learn to be a winner. Is something not going your way? Some times things won't, and it may not seem fair. Some times we are not always privy to the big picture and will not understand why a certain decision is made. But there is no point in sabotaging your own happiness, job satisfaction or voluntary work by not continuing to perform to your best. Being a winner is rising above setbacks, as winners know there is a bigger game at play.
As the saying goes, we are all in this together, so let's serve the best we can.