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A Frame In Resilience

Updated: Apr 25, 2020

Good Morning.

Resilience is waking up in the morning, expecting today to be different from yesterday, finding out that it is going to be similar till 5 pm and making a decision to prioritize what is important to this system and less of what is urgent.

It is a new norm during Covid-19 “circuit breaker” in Singapore. Circuit breaker is similar to a lockdown in other countries. I know it is going to be different and yet have found it challenging to transition in action to the new norm. Which part specifically? Managing my own expectations around the amount of work I can get done. Interestingly as I reflect, I realize I have faced this on many an occasion. From the normal u + v + w + x + y + z workload, I am expecting x + y + z in terms of work in these new circumstances and notice what gets churned out is x and have to remind myself to take a chill pill.

Call it what it is: Over-ambitious Expectations! (To some others, which guy is this planet on? He needs to better time manage!)

Circuit breaker is planned to last a month. It is 10 days and I felt the effects last night and possibly my other half too. It wasn’t the effects of being cooped up at home. It was the effect of 16 – 18 hour days. Aside from yesterday and today, we manage to get 20-30% of normal work days work done during the hours of 7 am – 9 pm on good days. This is in an environment including a one and half and ten year young kids. And then we do whatever work we can after. Yesterday and today are different. Elfie had a work day till 11 pm yesterday and 5 pm today. So kids are with me. Work takes a back seat.

And as much as I tell myself to let it go, there is often that bit that stays and eats at me. It’s the bit of “should be-s” and “could be-s”. I should this and I could that. Then I pause and remember that I am not alone in my work and family system and not alone in the world with this experience. It is times like this that there is more understanding, more empathy and accepting more of the un-norms amongst the many other mores. It is indeed unique.

I am also glad I have these bits that eat at me. It reminds me I am alive, still have the drive and complacency hasn’t started to set in. To me this is part of my resilience. With regards to my systems resilience, it is only sustainable because both my family and work systems recognize the value and thus supports our systems resilience. Among the range of values and skills, they too emit and practice & this inspires and exemplifies our systems culture.

To keep finding solutions and ways that work for what is important to our systems. This is our frame of resilience.

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