Note: This blog entry was written by guest author, Katie Selby. Katie is a Co-Lead Facilitator in Minneapolis, MN.
At LeaderShape’s Institute program, we do an activity called Videre about chaos and change that lets us experience our own reactions to unexpected changes and the instability of systems. I couldn’t help but think of Videre these past couple weeks as the CoVID-19 pandemic brings unprecedented and confusing changes to our lives.
What routines were you skipping along to in early March? Spring semester on campus? A new study abroad experience? The familiar cadence of your work world? Maybe life felt like a circle of your friends, tossing a tennis ball, counting your production wins, and yelling “Videre!” at regular intervals.
I felt the first round of disruptions come into my game the week of March 16th. Assumptions that I thought would never be shaken changed rapidly to a new reality: universities moving to online learning, my kids home from school for the indefinite future, and no longer being able to visit my mother. As each week goes on, I’m realizing that the disruptions will continue. My city recently announced that all public pools and beaches will be closed for the summer and instantly my expectations for summer with my kids were shattered. I’m trying to stay centered knowing that what I can control are my reactions to the crisis.
When the Videre activity comes to a close, we talk about tension between what exists now and what will be in the future. We share the Margaret Wheatley quote “The things we fear most in organizations – fluctuations, disturbances, imbalances – are also the primary sources of creativity.” I think this quote brings about some important reflection questions for us in the time of CoVID-19.
- How will you stay centered in your values as unexpected changes emerge?
- As a leader, how can you model vulnerability and courage for others?
- What sparks of creativity and innovation can you discover among the disarray?
- How will your vision change or expand given this rapidly-changing reality?
- How are you taking care of yourself in order to have energy to give to others?
We are certainly living in unprecedented times and none of us knows the new rules of engagement. In crisis, I find myself seeking solace in my foundational values and for me, LeaderShape was at the center of that values discovery. So go ahead, pull out your LeaderShape binder or visit LeaderShape on social media to reconnect with that feeling of unbounded hope and possibility. The world needs you more than ever!
Katie Selby has been coaching early career professionals through career & life transitions for more than 20 years in her roles as career coach, college recruiter, and leadership educator. Katie led undergraduate career and leadership development for the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota for more than 10 years, serves as a national Co-Lead facilitator for LeaderShape since 2006. Katie holds an M.Ed. in Human Resource Development from the University of Minnesota and is founder and principal coach of QuarterLife Coach LLC.