The unprecedented socio-economic developments due to the outbreak of the corona virus has opened up a pandora’s box of issues concerning work and life. The immediate impact of the economic fall out includes job losses, health care concerns and the worry of day to day living. A plethora of such issues are bound to get the working population into a stress anxiety depression cycle. Executives who live with generalized anxiety disorders will find an increase in their underlying condition. A significant portion of our emotional tranquility is contributed by our social behavior like travelling, meeting people and other social behaviors. However the compulsion of social exclusion and distancing is likely to make us feel lonely and depressed.
Anxiety is an excessive worry or rumination concerning our future. Executives are faced with threat at all levels in the hierarchy . At the mid and lower management levels, the issues related to financial security looms large while at the higher management and entrepreneurial level the fear is about the business continuity itself. The former levels may worry of salary and house bills and the other level will be bothering on how to pay the corporate loans and salaries. This existential challenge is thus quite worrying .
Self counseling and professional counseling helps executives to tide over the crisis depending on their coping mechanism. Numerous seafarers have told me about the challenging situations intermittently faced by them at sea. Ships faces storms and turbulent waters making it go up and down vigorously. If you have seen the movie called STORM then you can easily grasp this situation. Most of the captains whom I have spoken to have told me that in those difficult times they remain calm and focused on the technical activities to be done in the ship to keep its buoyancy intact. They say that irrespective of the crisis they believe in the sea, that it will become calm shortly. Each ship encounter such problems regularly but hardly few have sunk. The captain of the ship works on his experience, confidence, talent and above all hope.
One of the techniques that I advise is on using the power of imagination. Consider you to be the captain of your ship with passengers called your family in. As like the ship’s captain, please focus on your sail and get into the technical aspects of social distancing, hand washing and self quarantining. Get into improving your immunity by taking preventive nutrition. Practice meditation. As a captain you cant show weakness and your mind should be alert and your strength is HOPE, because most ships does not sink and will tide over the storm. The economic cycle will always have a trough and crest and as a captain of your ship you should know that pandemics will go, demand will rise again , jobs and money will come back and my ship will sail through .
You need to focus now on the upkeep of your ship that is YOUR HEALTH. Take care.