The Leader in You: April 17, 2020
It feels like we are war right now. But wars are won one battle at a time and the battle right now is stopping the spread of COVID-19. At this moment there is more at stake than ever before. The impact of COVID-19 is touching and will touch everything we hold dear and believe in. All age groups, all races, commerce, trade, institutions, relatives, society and social norms, professions, government order, everything we took for granted, loved and believed in.
This pandemic, this world affliction, is so much bigger than any one of us, what can we do? What can you do? You can do what you do best, but with more initiative and resilience.
This is not something we chose, but it is a challenge that is upon us! You have the skills and the ability to safeguard yourself, your family, your friends and neighbours, the person across town, all of humanity. Regardless of government programs, health directives and emerging technologies, you have to engage your personal values. Not one of the external rules, policies or processes will have any affect unless you exercise your personal values. The world as we know it will be forever changed. You are intrinsic to shaping that world. Overcoming COVID-19 is the battle, emerging with a society that values freedom, justice, equality and people is the challenge.
Social distancing and limited travelling are important actions to limit the exposure and spread of the virus, but that does not mean you should hunker down and navel gaze until it passes. Now is the time to be a leader and take a leadership role. Empower yourself to live your values and support others. There are people around you that you depend on and that depend on you, who need support, whether you, or they, know it or not. So reach out, lead by example, simply managing to get by is not whom you are. Leaders empower those they lead, for your sake and theirs, be a leader and share the burden. You don’t have to be perfect. You don’t have to have all the answers. You don’t have to exceed any expectations or solve specific problems. Remember the phrase attributed to Aristotle: “the whole is more than the sum of its parts”. That adage has never been more true. If we take up the mantle of individual leadership, empower ourselves to do what we can, every individual effort will help us through this crisis and create a better society, a better world.
How can you do that? Remain isolated, respect physical distancing, listen to reliable sources and health experts (not social media), ask local groups what you can do from home to help others, go out to shop only if necessary (better still have it delivered), call a friend or neighbour and I’m sure you can think of many other ways to contribute and lead.
Every positive step you take will enhance your personal values and bring out the leader in you. Be well.