Thoughts on COVID-19, Social Distancing, Creativity and Worry

My kids are about to start their second full week of being at home with me instead of being with their friends in preschool. This is the story for everyone in my community as we navigate our ways through COVID-19. I am spending part of my Sunday planning out how we will use our home in the coming week so we don’t go stir crazy. These are interesting times! 

I want to share a few thoughts that keep coming up for me.

First, on the topic of Social Distancing: 

Basically social distancing is a constraint put on us to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and not overwhelm our healthcare system. So as I think about constraints, I am reminded of Rachel Olsen spoke at the Inspiration Lab Conference back in the fall. Her session was titled, “Break Through the Noise: An Interactive Session to Unleash Your Creativity.” 

It used to be thought by psychologists that constraints stifle creativity, but now we know that is in fact not true. 

 “Your constraints can be powerful catalysts for creativity”

~ Rachel Olsen

We are in a new season of some serious constraints

  • Don’t be in groups of more than 10. This means no church meetings; many work places are now working remotely, all schools are closed and so many events have been canceled.
  • Don’t go to the beaches. The beaches are now closed in Wilmington. For me and lot of my friends, this was an outlet for our kids and ourselves to re-center and remember God in nature.
  • Work at home, educate your kids at home and basically don’t leave your home. This is a huge stressor that I don’t want to understate, AND I can’t help but recall a this quote from Mother Teresa 
  • We don’t know how long this will take and we don’t know what the world will be like after this. The planners in my life are quite stressed about this! If your job is about holding events or anticipating trends to market solutions, this time is at a standstill.
  • There will be layoffs, furloughs and unemployment spikes. Something like this can rock your world. As a career coach, I am anticipating a lot of conversations about where to go from here, how to find a job and how to fight the feelings of depression and failure that can easily creep in. 

Your boundaries don’t hold you back. The way you think about them does. You could succeed and do amazing work because of your constraints! 

Now on the topic of Worry:

A pastor friend of mine, Nate Stratman spoke about worry not too long ago and these are the notes I kept from his sermons:

  • You can focus on the weeds or focus on growing healthy grass. This is a choice we make when facing the “weeds” in our lives. 
  • Say you have two dogs. If one dog was worry and the other is peace, the bigger one is the one you feed. It’s all about perspective. 
  • Seek first the Kingdom of God and your problems get put in the right order. 

 So what will come after this season of constraints and worry?

I am hopeful that despite the potential for recession and huge economic impact there might be a renaissance of sorts where we rise and share our ideas with the world in new and innovative ways.

Want to learn more about the Inspiration Lab (my favorite professional women’s networking org)? Check out the deets here:

Facing a layoff or career change? If I can help, I’d be glad to. Learn more about my coaching practice here

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