As restriction ease, we keep hearing about a new normal.
It’s about to emerge after this pandemic. And you might just as well ask, what is this new thing, and am I really prepared for it?
We would all like to think that the new normal, whatever that is, is somehow better than what it was previously.
During the Great Depression, many well-known and great businesses commenced that today are household names.
So what can you do to build all the inner resources you need to bounce-back after this pandemic?
Refuel your fire
If you were feeling stagnant in your job before the pandemic, then those feelings may have been heightened during the crisis.
Author of The Power of Purpose, Richard Leider, says there is no better way to unlock your purpose than taking time out from your usual schedule to reflect on what really matters to you.
“A sense of life purpose promotes physical, mental, and spiritual health,” he says. “People who seek meaning beyond themselves are healthier, happier, and live longer.”
Michael Steger, Founder and Director of the Center for Meaning and Purpose, and Professor of Psychology at Colorado State University says that meaningful work is a good predictor of desirable work attitudes like job satisfaction. “It is a better predictor of absenteeism from work than job satisfaction,” he says.
So ask yourself:
1. How will your identification of your purpose propel you into the new future?
2. What projects do you really feel passionate about?
3. How am I preparing for the new normal?
What’s your vision for the future?
Knowing where you’re going can help inform your decisions and shape your career journey.
It’s better to think of future direction as a compass initially before getting into concrete goal-setting. That way, you can start with re-imagining what the future may look like for you.
Author of Pivot: The Only Move that Matters is Your Next One, Jenny Blake, suggests we start off by asking some free-flowing questions:
4. Describe your ideal day. If money was not an issue, how would you spend your time?
5. What excites you the most?
6. Think of a peak time in your life. What was happening? What were you thinking? How did it make you feel? What did you accomplish?
7. Am I making the right connections to help me step forward into the new future?
Making a fresh start
If you’re thinking of pursing a second, third, or encore career, it can be an exciting yet frightening prospect.
Po Bronson, author of What Should I Do With My Life? , followed many people who took the ultimate challenge of self-discovery by uprooting their lives and starting again.
He met an investment banker who shifted to become a farmer, and a chemical engineer who transitioned to become a lawyer in his sixties.
“Ultimately,” he says, “it’s about people who have dared to be honest with themselves.”
Such radical life and career transformations are not for everyone, nor do they indeed need to be seen as a solution to some inner angst.
But a more thorough examination of your current situation might render you to take some initial steps towards your calling.
8. What am I prepared to let go of to make room for something else that is missing?
9. What are the risks in staying with what I’m doing to trying something new?
10. How can I make my current situation better by changing just one small thing each day?
11. How am I staying relevant in my current job?
So what’s next?
The new normal is what you will discover for yourself going forward.
It goes deeper than just wondering whether you can work from anywhere, sit in a cafe next to other people, hot desk back in the office, or go to a football match in safety.
Your new normal will be emerging through a thorough self-examination and reflection, by re-imagining a future where you will shine and excel, regardless of the external circumstances in which you find yourself.
And now is the perfect time to do it.