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Can you Cope with the COVID19 CRISIS Cycle?

COVID19 Crisis Cycle

Release, Reach, Regroup, Recovery for the COVID Crisis Cycle.

The COVID19 pandemic has leveled the playing field. We are all in it together. I’m sharing my raw and crazy life about our four weeks of the COVID crisis cycle for all of you to read. There is some hope at the end. I pray that you read to get that hope and light because after all, we are all in this together.

Week 1: We've GOT this! (Excitement & Opportunity)

How many of us can relate to this COVID19 Crisis Cycle? During the announcement of week one, I felt strength, made plans, made a decision that I was going to be a leader and help others get through that first week. (I’m sure you jumped into action! I know that I did).

I created flow charts, memes, made phone/zoom calls, and so forth to really get ready for the needs of my clients, family, school kids, etc. I was that Beacon of light and did what I could to really serve my people. Week one was very exciting, full of possibilities and positivity. (Does this sound familiar?)

Week 2: Made a Plan; We can make it! (Plans implemented positivity still shining)

At week two I saw how my planning was working, and I looked at and took account for many of the variables:

Shortages in supplies for my clients, my students, myself, and for the country.

I might have clients that would only have two weeks’ worth of pay left, but I would help them.

I created a list of resources to give to them to continue to help.

My clients, students, and family were following the advice and schedules I gave them. Many were on board because they understood that the playing field had been leveled. We were and are all in this together. My light was helping others and still, I was pretty positive.

Week 3: Reality Ripped up that Plan:

Wow. As week three came about there was this weight that was beginning to hit me. There were cries for attention, for intervention, for revamping, for help, for “this is not fair” (my extrovert teenagers) were coming in faster then I could handle. Deep breath! I remember thinking to myself, I can make adjustments and keep serving my clients. However, there was a weight that continued to build somewhere deep inside of me. (I was not the hero, but I could direct them to light. I felt the still small voice remind me to Don’t take on their problems. Hold the boundary, but offer light).

Suddenly the needs from work started to pile up, the students I was serving in rural areas were not really able to connect online/Zoom, and I thought about the challenges they must be facing. Suddenly I felt a bit of my light dim. WO! Hang on, I tell myself. Let’s get a deep breath (in one, two three, four, and out, two, three, four—repeat).

Now that my head was a little clear I still smiled on & push through. But there was a little feeling—dread—and suddenly a new shift happened (not with my clients, but at home). In all my preparation I felt myself default to the previous level of preparation I had. I could see in my mind’s eye the following:

1) school teachers feeling the weight of it

2) parents trying to do their best but feeling lost and breaking,

3) then there were the kids and teenagers who looking for adult support and all they can see were stressed-out adults staring into their screens trying to solve another problem for a client or for a student.

4) Or, for their elderly parents who at the highest risk of getting COVID19 and live 1300 miles away from you.

Suddenly I realized it was Friday and I close off the computer after the last client call of the week and look around at my notes, my schedules, the food on the kitchen table, the papers with scribble math, and “I hate writing” written on the top, the list of the needs from my clients and I take another deep breath.

I could feel my mind say, Everyone made it. You actually were that light of service for clients, for family, for students, and for your parents. All your kids got 80% of their work done. They were fed. You have toilet paper. That deserves a pat on the back and a feeling of love and peace.

As soon as I thought that and got ready to embrace it, there was a feeling of “should a-would-a could a.” It was stirring from the dark shadow behind me. I looked again at the screen at the black and emptiness of it and thought, I have a choice. “if I don’t release this dark feeling I will not have light to shine for my clients, students, or family next week.”

Week4: Survival, Strength, & Smiles

It was the end of week three and now the beginning of week four. I (with all of you) have just been told that we have at least another 30 days to go in the quarantine. The list of to do’s hits me again: help your family hold strong, encourage relationships with each student to know they are cared for and safe, and bless the lives of my clients and all I serve. Suddenly I was SLAMMED with another dark voice!

A shame voice in my head screams, The CRISIS is crushing! You wont’ make it. What kind of a leader are you? One who can’t cope with it? You are going to lose clients, students, and your job over this…. I stand up from my computer find myself digging into my psychological toolbox/coping skills. I know that I must go into the bathroom with my notebook to cry it out.

During my bathroom cry, an answer came.

It came in three words and one sentence:

Release, Reach, Regroup.

This is a cycle.

Suddenly my hand grabs the pen and I write down the following inspiration:

1) Release through crying, writing, or exercising—something healthy.

2) Reach out to friends, coaches, or family.

3) REGROUP! Deep breath, kneel and count your blessing, and give grace to yourself and others with this cycle. This leads you to a stronger recovery.

*It will rinse and repeat.

Dear leaders, teachers, parents, this blog post is raw, open, and filled with emotion. The point of it is this: We are in a crisis cycle. The playing field has been leveled. We have an opportunity to rise and fall and rise again with the cycle. No one will be on their game 100% of the time. All of us will need to reach out and UP for help. Please allow yourself grace when that happens. Know that the release is necessary. The reach outward and upward is vital. And then the regrouping is a huge part of the recovery.

We are all in this together. Let your light so shine. If it is dimming, please Release, Reach, Regroup for your Recovery. I love you, I will cry with you, I will help you, and I will show up shining for you. I pray you will for me. We are all in COVID19 Crisis Cycle together.

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