This morning I looked at my mobile and I had 99+ notifications in email, 95 in the social media folder and 35 on Whatsapp. Even if I address one a minute – that’s going to take me 3.81 hours or half a day! That’s after I’ve done the morning work out with Joe Wicks, home-schooled my children for three hours, learned a new skill, such as playing the guitar, had lunch, baked bread with the children to teach them a life skill – in between ‘working from home’ during this lockdown as a result of the Covid-19 virus.
If I run my own business, then I am feeling under pressure to learn a new platform at least twice a day. I am experiencing a growing level of anxiety because I am being told that I must now master Zoom, I have to use Monday or Trello or Hubspot or Keap or Infusionsoft or Kajabi or… or .. . or … Because if I don’t then I will be left behind when we return to the #newnormal. But I have platform exhaustion. I don’t feel I have the mental bandwidth to take another online course or learn another software platform.
Keeping your business going on the ground is stressful enough right now, keeping in touch with your employees, wondering how you are going to pay them, keeping your supply chain open, managing the finances, let alone finding a way to serve the customers you are managing to retain.
When we return to the offline world – which some people are saying we actually won’t do – if I haven’t reinvented myself to accommodate this new way of being, if I haven’t found a new way to present my business, then I am going to fail spectacularly.
We are just entering week three of lockdown. Wouldn’t it have been better if we could all have just taken a breath and had a week to cope with working out how we were going to manage ourselves?
But why the pressure?
Do not underestimate how stressful a time this is. I think the pressure we feel at the moment is borne of the fear of loss. We have lost our way of life. We have lost what is familiar to us and we are buying into the fear that nothing will ever be the same again. We are struggling to hold on to our livelihoods and we fear we will lose our businesses.
Yet, I hear people all the time saying ‘When this is over we are going to have a massive party.’ People are talking about all of the summer events which have been cancelled, the sports events, the social gatherings, online networking is ok but people like to have breakfast with other business owners and they are craving their return. We want connection.
We will go back to a different normal – yes – because this experience will change us in ways which we had not foreseen a month ago, but let’s not allow the fear of where we are now, encourage a panic and a pressure to do even more than we were doing before. We were stressed before we started lockdown.
Communicate with your customers to let them know you are still around sure. Take each day at a time, do what you can, keep in touch with your customers. Hey, why not even use an old technique and phone them? That would surely put you apart from the competition who are doing major social media campaigns and webchat and Zoom etc.
Don’t buy into the pressure that you have to reinvent yourself and your business has to go online. Some will yes but we want connection, we always will.
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Contribution by Elaine Flook – see more articles at elaineflook.com
Elaine is a Performance Therapist and Consultant to Bookable.