Our New Normal Amid the CoronaVirus

Our New Normal Amid the CoronaVirus

Never has there been a better time than now during this coronavirus pandemic to address the adverse effects of loss, which are grief, trauma, and stress and to offer some ways to address the many emotions that accompany loss. 

Even before the coronavirus pandemic, we were working in an environment that was constantly changing - at a tremendously fast pace! However, the COVID-19 virus changed just about every area of our personal and work lives in a very short time. We are all adjusting to the demands of learning how to work from home effectively, purchasing groceries, waiting for the closed businesses that we relied on to reopen (hopefully), to suddenly carrying the responsibility to teach our children, and many other changes. We are all adjusting to our new normal.

When suddenly faced with change that comes so quickly, with little or no control over that change, we can feel lost, angry, inadequate, frightened, and any number of emotions. There are so many decisions we need to make, so much information that we need to quickly absorb, understand, and act upon that it can be overwhelming! 

Here are some thoughts for addressing your grief to reduce your stress.

We all have different stress/loss thresholds.  How you react to the events happening to you depends on a wide variety of factors. Different stressors affect each of us differently. Whatever your feelings and emotions are, they are OK, and there is no need to change them or deny them. Try not to compare yourself and your reactions to others. Your day-to-day experiences may be very different from other people, even if that difference is not easily discerned. 

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    Take care of yourself. Go for a daily walk or some other form of exercise.Focus on what you can control and remind yourself of those areas frequently.
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    Use meditation to calm yourself. If new to this type of care, give it a try.
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    Keep a journal to jot down your thoughts and emotions to help “get them out.”
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    Give your day structure with routine times and responsibilities.
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    Manage, as best you can, the demands on you such as work, home, family, financial that may cause depression, anxiety, and lack of sleep.

Losses. During this coronavirus pandemic, the losses can be tremendous. Grief is a normal reaction to loss. For some of us, it is the loss of loved ones, friends, a co-worker, or someone you hear about through social media. For others, the loss is financial. The fear resulting from job loss, the inability to pay your bills often results in grief. For others, it may be a loss of control. Whatever loss you are experiencing, focus on the belief that you will get through this difficult time.

For all of us, remember to take care of yourself and your family during these very stressful times. That should be our highest priority and is what’s most important, now and in the future.

Is Your Workplace Prepared?

With trauma, it is not a question of whether or not it will hit your company; it is a question of when. My advice as a business coach is to be prepared for when. My newly published workbook entitled "Workplace Trauma Solutions - A Workbook for Managers" guides you step-by-step so that you and your staff are ready to deal with trauma, grief, and loss. Read more at https://www.griefcoaching.com/workplace-trauma-solutions-workbook/ 

I offer professional workplace trauma solutions with a human resources and manager focus from early stages to late stages of trauma, grief, and loss. My process is compassionate and in-depth. After an initial consultation, I prepare a tailored program based on your specific needs. Coaching encompasses one-to-one manager or staff member training or the entire team or company. If you are interested in setting up a training class or Lunch & Learn at your office, contact me at www.WorkplaceTraumaSolutions.com or 551-800-1127.

The Loss of Kobe Bryant

The Loss of Kobe Bryant

An Outpouring of Love

National tragedies or the death of a public figure such as Kobe Bryant, causes us to stop and mourn. Bryant was an icon in the sports world as well as nationally and internationally. His loss is felt by many across the globe. Such a loss touches even those who did not know him personally. Also, eight others died with Bryant. While not as well known as Bryant, they were shining stars in their own right.

Listening to Kobe’s friends and peers speak about him, I am touched by their desire to honor him even though they have not yet gotten control of their emotions. One of his former coaches in the NBA spoke at a press conference. He was not able to hold his feelings down, and several times during the brief time he spoke, he had to stop and compose himself. That same scene played out numerous times with Kobe’s other close relationships, talking about what Kobe meant to them. It is reflective of the deep love and admiration they had for him. 

Because of their deep feelings for Bryant, many of his peers and friends chose to speak publicly of the loss before they had time to fully process the shock of such a sudden loss or control their emotions.  

 
 

In an Instagram post from LeBron James, the day after Bryant’s passing, he wrote: “I’m not ready, but here goes.” In a touching display of his love for Kobe, James was determined to push through his grief and speak about how he would honor his friend Kobe. (Read the full Instagram post here: http://bit.ly/2O50jtp

Consider for a moment how far-reaching the grief is. All nine aboard that helicopter had family, friends, peers, acquaintances, co-workers that are directly touched by the loss of each individual who died. Their workplaces will no doubt also be feeling the profound loss of their employee’s loved ones. Three young students died in the crash. Their schools will most likely provide counselors on-site to help their fellow students process the loss. However, most workplaces do not offer such assistance. 

It is possible that you, as a manager, could be called on at a moment’s notice to speak about one of your employees who has been touched by a tragedy. In the case of Kobe Bryant, the media was an aid to his friends in speaking about their grief. In general, most companies would not have such support available to them to address their pain. In your company, it could be one of your employees or a member of their family that experiences a tragedy. As with Bryant’s circle of friends, do you think you could pull yourself together enough to communicate about the loss?

your workplace could be impacted

Here are some things that would be valuable to consider and perhaps plan for within your company:

  • Since communication is of the utmost importance during a crisis, acknowledge the tragedy by communicating sensitively and with a personal tone.
  • Consider who would be the person to speak to the public or your company, and what would they say.
  • How should your employees be notified? Via email, company meeting, or department heads of individual teams?
  • What is the relationship with the person in your company?

How severely these events impact your employees, their work effort, and the company is not predictable. Putting a process in place that can aid company managers is your best course of action so that when the need arises, you are ready to respond quickly and effectively.

Are you prepared?

With trauma, it is not a question of whether or not it will hit your company; it is a question of when. My advice as a business coach is to be prepared for when. My newly published workbook entitled "Workplace Trauma Solutions - A Workbook for Managers" guides you step-by-step so that you and your staff are ready to deal with trauma, grief, and loss. Read more at https://www.griefcoaching.com/workplace-trauma-solutions-workbook/ 

I offer professional workplace trauma solutions with a human resources and manager focus from early stages to late stages of trauma, grief, and loss. My process is compassionate and in-depth. After an initial consultation, I prepare a tailored program based on your specific needs. Coaching encompasses one-to-one manager or staff member training or the entire team or company. If you are interested in setting up a training class or Lunch & Learn at your office, contact me at www.WorkplaceTraumaSolutions.com or 551-800-1127.

WHAT IF TRAUMA TOUCHES YOUR WORKPLACE?

WHAT IF TRAUMA TOUCHES YOUR WORKPLACE?

This weekend's deadly shootings have highlighted the need for Human Resources professionals and company officers to prepare their staffs to handle workplace trauma. As the weekend's events have shown, any company, in a moment, could be dealing with loss at their workplace.

The deaths of the victims of this weekend's violence will touch the lives of many others. Family, relatives, and friends of the deceased and injured will experience deep grief. What if they worked for your company? Perhaps one of their extended circle of family or friends does work for your company. Would you be prepared to provide support? Would you know what to say or do? Would your staff know how to be with the grieving individual? Would your employee manual or company policy cover such circumstances?

Are you prepared?

Trauma is one of the most difficult workplace events for managers to deal with positively, proactively, and productively. Many managers feel that training is not necessary unless there is an event, such as an employee's death occurring in their the workplace, and they do not prepare.

With trauma, it is not a question of whether or not it will hit your company; it is a question of when. My advice as a business coach is to be prepared for when. My newly published workbook entitled "Workplace Trauma Solutions - A Workbook for Managers" guides you step-by-step so that you and your staff are ready to deal with trauma, grief, and loss. Read more at https://www.griefcoaching.com/workplace-trauma-solutions-workbook/ 

I offer professional workplace trauma solutions with a human resources and manager focus from early stages to late stages of trauma, grief, and loss. My process is compassionate and in-depth. After an initial consultation, I prepare a tailored program based on your specific needs. Coaching encompasses one-to-one manager or staff member training or the entire team or company. If you are interested in setting up a training class or Lunch & Learn at your office, contact me at www.WorkplaceTraumaSolutions.com or 551-800-1127..

Her Mom Died. What Should I Do and Say?

Her Mom Died. What Should I Do and Say?

Recently I learned that a dear friend’s mother passed away.  As I collected myself, I had many thoughts and feelings, which included sadness and concern for my grieving friend. I thought I would list a few questions that most of us ask ourselves when hearing about a loss. Perhaps it will give you some guidance and help you to take steps yourself to comfort someone grieving a loss.

“Should I call?”  “Is now the right time?” Since my friend’s mom lived across the country, I had no idea if my friend was alone, busy with the details of the wake and funeral, helping her dad or any other tasks that needed her attention. I decided to trust my heart and reach out to her right then. I was only able to leave a , but I felt better knowing that she knew I was thinking about her. A return message from her told me that she felt better knowing that so many of her friends were letting her know that they were thinking of her with loving support.

What should I say?

“What should I say?” “Will I make things worse?” For me, there is often that moment of doubt when first reaching out to someone who has just suffered a loss. What if I don’t know what to say and end up saying nothing? Somehow the right words might come or perhaps saying nothing and being present with them in the moment might be what the grieving person needs. Trusting yourself is the right path to choose. In times of grief, we want to know that others are supporting us whether it is in thoughts, prayers, words or action.  Even the strongest person needs comfort and support during difficult times.


After the call, then what?

One way to handle this question is to ask them what you can do to help them. Avoid saying “Call me if you need me.” Sometimes the best thing to do might be bring dinner and spending time with them. Sometimes make yourself available for a phone conversation and listen to them talk would be the best choice. If they are not up to talking, send a card with a note to let them know that you are thinking about them.

Even if you are uncomfortable (and many people are), it is better to extend yourself and reach out to someone experiencing grief or loss.

Coach Linda

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