We started 2020 with enthusiasm and eagerness to create a decade of mental wellbeing, inclusive workplace cultures and a need to support our five generations of talent. As we approach summer and half way through the year of a new decade and most of us are living through an unprecedented time, the impact of uncertainty is triggering an array of emotions.
We have spent a considerable time in lockdown, a new concept, of social distancing which has been a catalyst for me to explore how we might turn a corner from this experience and bottle the magic we are seeing and feeling. My inner music is craving for the connections, the banter and laughter in a restaurant, the family dinner and the work team lunch.
Yet when we had these at our fingertips, did we connect with our inner music?
Connecting with people requires us to first connect with our own inner music. To feel our own vulnerability and emotions, the happy, sad, excited, grief, joy, and frustration to name a few. Owning and recognising our emotions requires us to be vulnerable and open to feeling and naming them. During this time of lockdown, I have felt an array of emotions, sadness, relief, anguish, happy and joy. Yes joy, joy when I hear a loved one is well, joy when I hear on the news someone has recovered from intensive care. I have experienced the connections we make with compassion and authenticity which gives us purpose and meaning to the relationships we have.
Whilst we are facing a wave of volatility we are igniting a flame of kindness and knocking down the barriers by sharing emotions and speaking with each other as humans. Leaders are now leading with empathy, our social connections with our neighbours is coming alive, our conversations with our clients are underpinned with care for their wellbeing and our creative minds have been aroused to adapt in these times.
The ripple effect has been phenomenal, teams uniting, grandparents spending increased time with their grandchildren through the power of technology, the conversations taking place between the five generations as we support each other to pass each day, and the force of kindness to support our wellbeing has been inspirational to witness and be a part of. I’m noticing the gestures of kindness, the human connections that are taking place, the creativity to inspire and motivate each other.
So, what will it take for us to bottle this magic and take it back to the workplace and for us to lead with compassion and empathy and connect with each other in the moment? What will it take for our inner music to be nourished with purposeful and meaningful connections?
I invite you to recognise the beauty of meaningful connections which nourishes our wellbeing, and opens the door for creativity, inspiration, and resourcefulness. I invite our business leaders to continue to give yourself permission to communicate with vulnerability and compassion which replenishes our wellbeing.
I invite you to listen to your inner music as you connect with your colleagues, as we bottle the magic of mindful connections.
A decade of kindness has started and I would invite you to continue to share the kindness with the creativity to support our inclusive and intergenerational environment with enthusiasm to make a positive impact.
Tali Shlomo is the Head of Inclusion & Wellbeing at Shearman & Sterling LLP in the UK