It has been 13 weeks since our lives changed due to COVID-19, and yet there is still so much to be learned. For me, I've noticed some difficulty adjusting to being around people again. After weeks of working from home and going out for errands very infrequently I never had the opportunity to develop good habits when it comes to being around my friends in this COVID-19 era. I've found myself in awkward social situations where we get distracted by our conversations and activities and suddenly realize that we're too close together without wearing our masks....but now who is going to speak up and get us back on track? It's easy to say, "oh, it was just for a second. It will be okay". But these "just for a second" moments can add up and I'm just not that comfortable with that. It had me in a bit of a conundrum because the overall the attitudes of those who I interact with on a regular basis are extremely positive. Everyone I know wants to do the right thing. We agree with the importance of wearing a face covering. We are committed to the health & safety of our communities. We want to do our part, but in reality it is so much harder than I ever thought.
As a business owner I have to think about how my actions impact the bigger picture. If I am complacent in my social activities then I am risking the health & safety of my team and my clients. This is simply not an option me, and I knew that I needed to get better. I needed to be a leader and a role model. I need to set aside my worries about feeling awkward and behave in a way that will ensure that I stay healthy and that anyone who interacts with me is safe.
In contemplating how I could best approach this and begin to shift my own behaviors to begin to build some healthy habits in this space I began to think about my values. What do I believe and what do I need to remind myself when I'm in a situation that feels uncomfortable, or when I'm setting expectations with those around me? I came up with six initial values, and I expect that this list will continue to grow.
1) There is still so much that we don't know about this virus.
2) The health & safety of those around me is my #1 concern.
3) It is important to remain diligent with wearing a mask and hand hygiene.
4) I must be an active participant in staying healthy & keeping my community safe.
5) I must avoid complacency at all costs.
6) I must be a role model to others.
These values were then translated into the values that we as a team commit to at Wilcox Wellness & Fitness. I think that posing this dilemma in the form of values rather than by creating strict rules helps us take personal ownership in a different way. I think it's hard to argue with any of these values, don't you? Of course the team embraced these values just as I expected that they would, and I think that it's helped us all work together in the struggle to be more diligent in this area.
When I feel myself getting nervous about the reopening of businesses across the state, and how that will impact me and how I reopen my business I think that my concern lies more in the ability to be confident that all of the steps being taken are enough. There is so much that we don't know, so it's hard to feel a complete sense of confidence that I'm doing everything right. It's not so black and white. But I think that if I continue to make decisions, and set expectations based upon these values, and remain committed to adjusting policies and procedures as we learn more information, than I can find confidence in my actions. When I reframe it this way in my mind I start to feel more optimistic about what the future holds and our ability to find a new normal that we can live with.
For now I'm feeling most comfortable being outside. I stay outside in my social interactions with my friends and family, and the programs that my business offers to my clients are outside as well. For me, I'm going to continue to observe the outcome
Hi! My name is Allison Hopkins and I am the owner of Wilcox Wellness & Fitness in Brunswick, ME. I am excited to bring WILCOX to Brunswick and share in my passion for living a great life through health and fitness.