March 13th, 2020, was the day many of us in the States went into COVID lockdown. For many of us, it was a complete reset with respect to how we do business and live our lives.
Fortunately, the Centers for Disease Control announced last month that vaccinated people in the States could, for the most part, go without masks if they’re around other vaccinated people. It seems like a giant step for getting back to “normal.”
On Sunday, shortly after this announcement, I ran into my neighbor, and in the span of our 45-second chat between him running out the door to pick up his kids, he shared how hopeful he is – but also how much he is not ready to “get back on planes every week.”
He’s already dreading aspects of post-COVID life (or returning to pre-COVID life…).
And I completely get it. Each week for the past six weeks, I’ve been either on a plane heading to a conference, going on a family trip, visiting GAN members, or hanging with GAN members here in Denver. I have loved the in-person interactions.
Yet, I’ve jumped right back into it. My schedule is busy. My time is crunched. I got an email from a client (who I love) this week who shared that he’s frustrated at how difficult it has been to get in touch with me.
All because I’ve jumped right back into it without really thinking about my “post-COVID” schedule and plan. And while we experienced a type of reset last March, we’re about to experience an even bigger, greater reset.
The Great Reset
Over the next few weeks, we will experience another complete reset of our rhythms. Most of our offices will return to some hybrid model. Travel will begin again. Conferences will pick up in the fall. Happy hours will proliferate. Friends will invite us over for dinners. And, for many companies and people, there is plenty of cash and capital to spend on these activities.
The Great Reset is at our doorstep, and our schedules are about to be very, very busy.
The problem is… we’re not prepared for the Great Reset.
How many of us are asking:
1) How much do we want to travel? Do we want to be on the road one week a month or one week a quarter, or even one week a year?
2) How much downtime do we want in our schedules? Right now, I’m spending one day alone each week without any meetings and about 90 minutes a day in heads-down time. And I’m realizing that’s not enough.
3) What rhythms do we want for our teams? Do we want our teams to have collective heads-down time each week?
4) What does it mean to spend time with friends after work? What can we do to avoid burnout because we’re doing too much outside of work?
5) What are the 4-5 most important things I should be focusing on right now? And how am I prioritizing those things?
I’ve spent the last few days reflecting on these questions, and while it’s not an exhaustive list, it’s been a great start to get me ready for all that’s about to happen. It’s helped me think hard about what aspects of my pre-COVID life I want to carry forward in a post-COVID world.
Through it all, I’ve realized that while my schedule isn’t anywhere near perfect, I’m at least not letting my circumstances dictate my schedule. And, the Great Reset is a huge opportunity to make sure that we don’t fall into the trap that many of us were in before COVID – one full of burnout and exhaustion.
The Great Reset will be a huge opportunity – let’s not waste it.