It might seem a little unusual to publish a “year in review” at the end of March, because aren’t those supposed to be reserved for Baby New Year? Not this time, and there are two big reasons for it.
First, I wanted to share some of my reflections on the past 12 months. I don’t have to tell you how challenging they’ve been. It’s always important to reflect on the obstacles we have overcome, and think about the good things we can take with us moving forward.
Secondly – and it’s a big one – April 1 marks Vida Aventura’s 15th anniversary! So we all have much to celebrate. I’m thrilled to still be standing and thriving, thanks to all of you. Buckle up, let’s go for a ride.
March & April, 2020
When the country went on shut down, none of us knew what we were in for. When this thing called COVID-19 began spreading across the world, the words unprecedented, crisis and pandemic became a daily part of our vocabulary. Business leaders everywhere scrambled to transition their in-person teams into functioning remote workforces, and quickly brushed up their skills in crisis management.
May & June, 2020
It quickly became clear that this work-from-home situation was going to last for awhile. Like so many others, I learned way more about Zoom calls and other video conference software than I thought possible, and who knew our walls and background décor would become so public? I also saw a drastic increase in clients who were battling mental fatigue and work-from-home burnout.
While the world continued to grapple with rising death numbers and the trauma of COVID-19, we also saw responses to racial injustice in the form of global protests and the Black Lives Matter movement. I could not stay silent, and shared with my clients a message emphasizing It’s Time to Do The Work. There was an outpouring of support, and many asked, “What can I do?” My response was a list of resources for those who wanted to support others and learn to be allies.
July & August 2020
During those hot summer months, I remember how easy it was to lose track of time. We were all left to develop our own way of working, and some days it felt impossible to get anything done. I’m usually a very structured person during my work day, but one big lesson I learned is that it’s okay to break the rules now and then. I also needed some cheering up, as I had to say goodbye to Ani, my beloved 18-year-old Lhasa Apso. It was a difficult couple of months, and as always, I continued to practice gratitude, realizing it would help me physically, emotionally and mentally.
September & October 2020
As summer came to a close, I was thrilled to see so many of my clients continue to thrive. Most of them were seeing record results from their remote teams, and leaders were embracing and thriving in spite of the circumstances. I helped them find creative ways to unite their teams and celebrate even the smallest of wins. But as summer headed into fall, the stress of rising deaths and no end of sight was difficult to keep at bay. My emphasis on self-care was more important than ever.
November & December 2020
It was hard to believe that the holiday season was upon us, especially since all those traditional parties and gatherings with families and friends weren’t going to happen. Like so many others, I had to reframe my expectations and realize that it was just going to look different. In other words, it was okay to freak out, but I was going to have to get over it. It was hard for my clients too. With no company parties or team gatherings, it was more important than ever to make the effort to say thank you, put in some extra effort and make it personal.
January & February 2021
One of the things I felt proud of during my first month of 2021 was realizing how far I’d come in terms of virtual team training and leadership coaching. And while in-person events are always preferred, I discovered that there are plenty of benefits, including the amount of people I can reach at the same time, and the creative ways to deliver sessions.
This experience is going to come in handy, because according to research, some of the top trends for businesses this year include:
- Team Building/Collaboration
- Leading Teams
- Leading virtually
I also ramped up my work with clients focusing on corporate culture and the post-pandemic challenges we’ll face. And with evidence of vaccine availability, the signs of spring and hope seemed to make everything look brighter.
Speaking of spring, wow was I ready for it to get here. During the month before I celebrate Vida Aventura’s 15 year anniversary, I have been filled with joy, positivity and anticipation. Workwise, I am scheduling really creative and innovative training events, many of which combine virtual and safe, in-person sessions. And on a personal note, I feel fortunate to have been vaccinated, and as more and more do the same, I am anxious to see what the rest of 2021 has in store.
Thank you to everyone who has been a part of my world over the last year. I appreciate every one of you, and look forward to the many years to come.