A diary of my experiences during these strange times 20/03/2020

So I read on Facebook last night a post encouraging people to keep a diary of their experiences during this extraordinary time. This morning I have been sat here on my computer with the news on feeling a little overwhelmed and emotional, so I thought, why not share my thoughts on here to help me make sense of my emotions and possibly help other people make sense of their emotions.

This week has been the strangest week I have ever experienced. Monday started fairly normally, I was teaching on an introduction to coaching study day. That was the last study I will facilitate for a while now. At lunch time we got the news that all non-essential meetings and training would be cancelled to allow for preparation for the impact COVID-19 will have on our services.

I spent Tuesday closing down all my coaching work and preparing for what I may be doing over the coming months, and Wednesday I was allocated to my new temporary role working on a helpline for staff.

Yesterday the helpline started, I was really nervous about what I would be doing, and working alongside new people. The people were lovely (of course they would be), the work was very similar to coaching in some respects, but in others much more challenging. Knowing when to give advice and when to ask questions and let them come to their own conclusions was quite challenging. The calls we were taking were tier 2 so they were generally more complex than just giving standard advice. It was not really busy, thankfully as we do need time to get skilled at building a rapport and provide useful actionable support in around 7 minutes, all over the phone. It is critical will help staff make the right decision about coming to work or planning for self isolation. As the cases go up in this area the busier we are going to be to steer them in the right direction.

Alongside of this schools and colleges close today. Jack my youngest was due to sit his A levels and complete his B-Tec in Music Production. This is not going to happen now. As he has been doing mock exams, his last lesson was last Tuesday. He was in on Wednesday, but that was it. He no longer goes to college. That feels so strange, in fact I got quite emotional about it this morning. It has brought forward my son becoming an adult. I wasn’t ready for this. I know it sounds silly but it has brought it into focus, that our life has changed for ever now.

Ben my eldest is in Manchester at BIMM, they broke up last week, and he has stayed in Manchester to work in a bar. Now that is uncertain, he has shifts for now. I am having to steal myself from being an over protective Dad and let him live his life. Deep down I want him home with us, but I also want him to continue to be independent and continue to do what he does. So Ben if you are reading this, you do want you know to be best for you.

As you know Mum my has lung cancer. She is now self isolating and is doing as she is told. I speak to her everyday, and she is well, but worried, and fed up with being stuck at home.

My niece Katie was due to be Married at the beginning of April, now that has been postponed until the autumn. It was supposed to be her Hen do last night and Lisa was due to go. That did not happen, it is so sad. I was really looking forward to seeing all of my family at the wedding, now I will have to wait until September. We have a plan though and e can all look forward to a lovely celebration in the Autumn, with an extra bridesmaid (Katie is pregnant and is expecting a little girl).

Stay strong everybody, keep an eye on why you do what you do. Make plans, and be creative.

I will post again tomorrow.


Published by Matt Smith Personal and Professional Coach

Performance and Life Coach

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