August 2021: Message from the President - On Transition, Resilience and Agility

August 06, 2021 6:00 AM | Scott Krawitz

“We can endure much more than we think we can.” Frida Kahlo.

As we are enjoying the summer months and the much needed respite from masks, we have much to look forward to. The Tokyo Olympics are giving us an opportunity to appreciate the mastery of athletes from around the world as well as five new Olympic sports including baseball/softball, karate, skateboarding, sports climbing and surfing.  Many children will be going back to school this month and many companies are welcoming teams back in varying capacities. There may also be  much transition ahead. 

The U.S. is experiencing a fourth wave of Covid-19. It is possible that control measures such as indoor masks and social distancing may be reinstated in the weeks and months ahead as the more contagious Delta variant spreads. After nearly a year and a half of taking these measures, the last couple of months have felt so liberating for most of us as we slowly resumed life as we knew it. This included eating in restaurants indoors, talking to people at a normal distance without masks, seeing family and going to the gym. I personally have felt so free and grateful. A part of me warns to not get too comfortable. As much as there were silver linings to the last year and a half (less commuting, more time with family, investing in fitness, learning how to connect and be productive using technology), there were many challenges. As I thought about the possibility of increased precautions, I wondered where we could seek inspiration, wisdom and hope. 

Frida Kahlo came to mind. Considered one of Mexico's greatest artists, Frida Kahlo endured unbelievable physical, mental, and emotional pain in her life from suffering from polio, to having an accident that cost her her entire health, she persevered and continued creating art and supporting political movements that she deemed important for her country.

I wonder from what well of power she sourced her energy, her fire and her drive. When clients share amazing achievements they’ve accomplished, I ask them how they did it. Using the ICF Competency of Evokes Awareness we can facilitate client insight and learning by using tools and techniques such as powerful questioning, silence, metaphor or analogy. 

Perhaps for ourselves and others, as we possibly face continued challenges in the remainder of the year, we can ask questions to ourselves and our clients that can connect us to our core power, our resilience and a vision that can help us move forward despite difficult circumstances. 

  • What inner resources helped you thrive during the lockdowns that occurred in 2020-2021? 
  • What wisdom did you gain during this time?
  • What would you do if it happened again?
  • What do you know now that you did not know then?
  • How would you advise your colleagues and friends to thrive during times of transition?
  • What activities help you recharge and gain your footing?
  • If there were a symbol or metaphor for the best ways you showed up, what would it be?
  • What thinking helped you be agile?

Here’s to your good health and ability to thrive in all circumstances. 

Shahrzad Sherry Nooravi, PsyD, MCC

President, ICF San Diego

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