One word we’ve heard a lot of this year is unprecedented. From bushfires, to corona virus, and now our cities are in lockdown. The impact both on our hospitals and our economy is unprecedented, and the impacts will linger longer than the virus.
This is something I spoke about with Zali Steggall on my podcast. We discussed this idea that unprecedented events are happening more than ever, and the challenge this will present to all of us.
Personally, I really hope we get a reprieve soon, I really don’t’ think I can cope with another crisis in 2020, and we haven’t even made it to Easter.
But one solution, that’s been helping me cope, is to focus on how to be resilient.
Resilience is a little bit stoic (I have been reading Marcus Aurelius) but whether it be battling climate change or slowing the spread of covid19, we need to be adaptable and flexible.
We need to be problem solvers. We can’t expect the same old processes to help us solve these new, unprecedented, challenges.
Many of us have pivoted to working from home, bars will now deliver cocktails to your door, engineers are turning scuba masks into ventilators, and everyone from Louis Vuitton to the local distillery are retooling to make hand sanitizer.
This is creativity, collaboration and empathy at work. But it’s also a remarkably rapid response by business entities, to a crisis that is outside their comfort zone. This is humanity at its best.
Cynics may say that they’re simply trying to profit from a crisis, or that it’s in their best interest to ensure the economy doesn’t crash. But I would say that’s entirely the point.
This is resilience. This is the beauty of the organisations we call businesses, and our ecosystem we call an economy. It morphs and shifts to support its own weight—to survive.
If there’s anything us humans have proved good at, it’s adaptation, and that gives me hope.
I’ll leave you with a quote from Bruce Lee, it infuriates my partner, she’s less sentimental than me, but I think it’s a good philosophy for most situations:
“Be water. Empty your mind, be formless.
If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup.
You put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Now, water can flow or it can crash.
Be water, my friend.”