COVID 19 Lockdown Day 20 – 15 April 2020 – What About End April?

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This morning I am listening to Ennio Morricone conduction his own composition from The Mission – Gabriel’s Oboe

Tomorrow Lockdown would have ended.

I try to keep a routine to my life. I do admin – surprisingly quite a bit of admin in these times. Short Term Insurance is very admin intensive at the best of times.  Now that we know more or less what is happening and can see how lockdown is affecting us, structuring policies become important. I spent time contacting clients and discussing options and relaying messages from the insurers. Clients have become like family! I fill up my time doing things that can help me become a better broker and businessman. (I must remember I still need 2 hours of CPD!)

As I have said numerous time, I avoid the sensational news more fervently than the virus. I am interested in the management of the virus process. I am interested in how different countries responded and the different measures that was implemented. As always, leadership plays a very important role.

Dinner time I switch off. Then it is a book like reread a Western for the umpteenth time. Or a movie on Netflix. It is a bad idea to take a virus to bed.  Which is difficult if your wife takes the time after dinner to study the situation in depth an then start discussing it 23h00! That is not conducive to good sleep.

Fear doesn’t exist anywhere except in the mind.
– Dale Carnegie

We suffer more in imagination than in reality.
– Seneca

Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more so that we may fear less.
– Marie Curie

In times of uncertainty, employees crave clarity. As a leader, you won’t always have all of the answers – no one expects you to – so you must be open to listening and learning from others. Once you understand a particular challenge and outline the options, you have to be confident in making bold and optimistic decisions.
– Marillyn Hewson

We all live with uncertainty at the moment, that is my conclusion talking to people.  If you work at a restaurant, your income came to abrupt end at the end of March. The uncertainty of making ends meet end of May is the question. What if lockdown is extended? Even if you have an essential business, your turnover is probably not enough to cover all the expenses.  If you are in business, you have extra worries, because you feel a responsibility for the employees. This I hear in many discussions.

That also becomes the source of fear! We start creating all kinds of “what-if scenario’s,” like I did last night! Imagination creates all horror movies. Just scroll up and read Seneca and Carnegie again.

Marie Curie has good advice. We have to try and understand the situation. There is help available from banks, life insurance companies, medical aids and even short term insurers. Contact the bank before a debit order does not go through. Contact the landlord in time. Anybody who thinks must realise that it is in everybody’s interest to keep as many people and businesses afloat as possible! Much better to receive a reduced rent than to try and find a new tenant or client amidst an economic depression. We are all in the same boat. Plan and prepare. The new world will create immense opportunities for individuals and small business. Be prepared!

That brings me to the quote from Hewson. Naturally it is important to speak to employees in these times. They have the same fears that we all have – and avoid rumours, some people live in their own horror movies and spread as fact! But remember our biggest leadership efforts are internal with ourselves.  It is a generally excepted fact that there will be new opportunities and growth after this. Nobody says it will be easy! But it seems the best never comes easily! This is where entrepreneurship comes in. Forget about the day-to-day score.  Start listening to successful people and what they say. Find articles about them or watch videos. I am thinking of people like Bill Gates, Ray Dalio, and others. Find them. The world will evolve – with or without me. I choose to be there.  Instead of stressing about things I cannot control, I’ll think how I can get on the ship that is about to sail from the harbour to a new and better destination.

That is the road to peace and tranquility.

(Don’t get me wrong, I don’t watch horror movies, never have, but if I allow my imagination to go down the wrong track, I can give any existing horror movie a run for its money at the box-office!).

“Once you understand a particular challenge and outline the options, you have to be confident in making bold and optimistic decisions..
– Marillyn Hewson


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