Covid, grief & surfing the waves

In between the statistics and government announcements about lockdown rules, many people have suffered and some shared their personal stories. Depending on where you are, you are or are not able to see your loved ones because they are sheltered elderly or vulnerable. I too am in/have had a personal crisis, my father died 2nd of June, and I experienced a complete focus on what is truly important. I am thankful that my dad spoke to us about love and wishes for the future – to be happy. But survival and then grief isn’t a linear process – it crashes and turns like the surf and we as a family had to adapt, be agile, kind, patient, decisive, and ultimately respectful of what the other wasn’t and was able to think and do.
My organisation, Middlesex University has been supportive and I am grateful for the compassion of colleagues. This isn’t a given. We have seen stories of people getting fired, denied new contracts, or expected to work as per normal if not harder despite being at home and taking care of children. Of course at the moment organisations are engaged in strategic thinking in uncertain times and the same applies to universities. Viewing people not as a means to an end but as a family with talents and needs that complement can actually instil trust and much goodwill. Agility, kindness and resilience are not just management buzzwords – as long as the organisation and family have your back. We are all part of the human race and together, at home or at work, we have much to think and talk about in terms of work-life well-being and riding the surf 🏄‍♂️

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