A New Normal
Posted on Jul 08, 2020 by Rob Garza
What interesting new challenges we’re facing. For me, meeting current clients and prospective clients virtually is challenging. And that will likely continue. But I’ve learned from past experiences that I like new challenges. No, I won’t be training for an Ironman or bodybuilding event … but the time at home is an opportunity to improve our lives. I’m going to dust off my drawing tablet (from a previous life in design) and try some new recipes in the kitchen with my daughter.
Like many, I’ve been working from home for the past few months. I’ve had to find new ways to help others, not only in business but for my friends and family who are all in the same boat. “We’re all in this together.” This applies not only to work, but family and others you’re close to.
Hollis Renewal Center in Kansas City, Kansas
Recently, I was at Hollis Renewal Center. It’s a quiet place I like to go to unplug. I stay at one of their cabins with limited phone service and no TVs. You’re surrounded by wildlife, hiking trails, and nature. I took my daughter, her fiancé, and other loved ones. Though we are family, we’re also a health care provider, an HVAC essential worker, an educator, and a student. One doesn’t always think about that when getting together with family. But this year was different. Conversations focused on how they’re coping each day, how they see new patients, new protocols to follow, and new restrictions when you have to enter a house or place of business.
Kids finished their school year by learning through workbooks and online meetings with their teachers, as well as social media platforms. (You still had to make sure they’re being taught and prepared for next year.) High schoolers still had homework, and if they were still in a scholarship program, they were required to meet and keep up with their goals. Adults have to stay on top of our game for work as well as staying healthy by avoiding too many snack trips to the refrigerator. It’s a stressful time added to what everyone already had on their plates before COVID-19.
Our new normal is to stay in touch with clients, prospects, and family through social media, emailing, texting, or with phone calls instead of meeting at their office, having coffee or lunch. This is hard for me personally because I like meeting people, going to new places, and trying new restaurants. I know this will all pass in time, but things will probably be different moving forward.
Another thing helping me through these interesting times is Salem’s men’s group. On Sunday mornings, we meet via Zoom. We usually start off sharing how the week went, giving family updates, and talking about new things we’re doing. Even though it’s a video conference, it’s nice. It’s personable and we really get to know each other better. From there, we discuss a spiritual awareness topic the meeting leader sends out a few days prior. We discuss the topic and challenges it has in our daily lives. How each person interprets the topic can be pretty interesting at times. From there, we veer off course to talk about sports and how golf games are coming along. I look forward to seeing everyone and listening to their perspectives.
Patience is a virtue
Those words are so true. I have friends and family who say that I have patience for a lot of things, but this certainly has tested my limits. I do meditate and find calm when I can … more so than I used to. I’m staying active, though I really would like to get back to the gym and the friends that I see there.
I’m not comfortable with some of the personal changes I’ve noticed during this time at home. My affectionate personality is diminished, which I’m not happy about. Washing my hands for no apparent reason is also becoming bothersome, even though I know it’s necessary.
We all have challenges during this time. It’s a great time to set some goals. Tackle that project you’ve been meaning to get done. Start learning a new skill or dive into a new hobby you’ve always wanted to pursue. Make sure it’s something different and not too easy. Make it part of your routine. Most importantly, finish it, because life happens and you can’t stop it but you can control it.
Salem Custodian and Digital Print Consultant at MEDiAHEAD