On Hopefulness in the Time of Corona
The Infinite Creative Potential of Being Human…
As I write this, on a sunny Sunday morning, I notice that, beneath anything else I feel, there is a strong sense of hope.
And here’s why…
The current corona pandemic seems to be reaching all corners of the world, no matter how remote and it seems to have taken over conversation and media in a way, and for a length of time, like nothing I can remember.
When I step out of the immediate I notice that a few things seem to have become even more clear to me, no matter how much my emotional response may go up and down, there is a clarity and a solidity to what I see that I find comforting and grounding.
I see how incredibly adaptable and ingenious people can be, at an individual and a collective level. My clients, my children, my neighbours are being thrust into circumstances they haven’t experienced before and yet, as one client said to me,
I feel as if our work together has prepared us for exactly this moment.
I don’t think that’s on me, by the way; it’s on him.His ability to adapt and respond and step-up when things around are chaotic and people are depending on him is within the grasp of anyone. So much so that I see it as not even a personal quality, but a function of being human, a quality we all share and that we can all access when we need to.
I see it in him as he decides how far to lean into the opportunity to create a brand new approach for the organisation for which he heads up strategy; what the balance should be between sticking to the old, the known, and taking a pause to review the chance to pivot, and the ideas that might come from starting with a blank page.
These can seem like ‘big’ decisions, and I know he has moments when he feels ill-prepared for them. But this is the magic, we are never as prepared as we think we are because we are only prepared for what’s in our mind, never for what actually is.
…is Perfect Preparation for Life
Yet, as it turns out, we are perfectly prepared because we have the responsive intelligence to make decisions and take actions, no matter what.
And it’s closer to home too. No matter how much my youngest child complains about missing his university friends or how pubs should be the first businesses to re-open (probably once a day), he’s also perfectly OK with what is, and I know that he knows that his complaining is not a statement of what makes him happy.
Other than when he thinks it is ;-).
He’s able to find his own way and fill his day with things that are (vaguely at least) socially useful and creatively interesting.
For me this is one of the most powerful things we can see about ourselves and others: that we have the ability for wisdom in any moment, no matter how different things might be from what we expected or what looked like it was ‘in the plan’.
And yes, sometimes that’s painful. I started to write out a list of the things I see around me that look painful, or look painful to people I love, but I decided not to, and to simply state the truth, as it looks to me, that to see the potential in someone, or in a situation, is not to deny that we all experience moments, or hours, or months perhaps, of pain and suffering.
Being hopeful is not the same as being naive.
What I see to be true, beyond our circumstances is this amazing ability to be with, and adapt to whatever is happening. And to see that, and feel the potential we all have, to witness it in motion, is a joy like no other.
I see change but I see hope as the bedrock that drives all our choices.
Originally published at https://cathypresland.com on April 26, 2020.