I Couldn’t Buy Toilet Paper and Now

My normal routine for grocery shopping is on Sundays.  I like to get what I need for the weeks I’m not traveling so I’m not going to a drive-through and eating in an unhealthy manner. As I rounded the corner of the aisle for paper goods, I was stunned that all the shelves were empty of paper towels, wipes, soaps, and more.  But it was my inability to buy toilet paper that jolted me. The assistant manager of our grocery store told me they sold a year’s worth of paper towels and toilet paper in 48 hours.  Sunday reminded me when our area prepares for a hurricane that’s forecasted for a direct hit. The last few days and now this morning after major events have been canceled as our government is preparing to mitigate community spread, it reminds me of the confusion and complexity after 9-11.   On 9-11, no one canceled their appointments with me and I spent the next 3.5 years working 6 and 7 days a week. Why? The uncertainty of then and now brings out fear in people.  You may not feel it as fear, but it is. It will show up in so many ways personally and professionally.  This virus puts us on heightened alert and our adrenalin revs up. It can show up as anxiety, poor decision making or being paralyzed. All of us will be affected in some way as business owners as events are canceled and potential clients are fearful to buy from us at this time. This situation may bring up fears from prior situations and contribute directly to building what you are experiencing now. Every person, organization, corporation has a fear response to situations like we face this morning with a virus now called a pandemic.  It may not look like fear to you. It may show up later. It may be recognized a year from now. It may not show up for you personally. It may show up with your clients.  It is currently showing up in all our communities right now. Here are the fear signatures that you will see and feel until this situation is under control. Fear Signatures

  1. Fight - There may be more arguments, pettiness, rolling of eyes or defensiveness.

  2. Flee - Emotional withdrawal, not responding to normal situations.

  3. Freeze - the inability to make decisions or take appropriate actions

  4. Faint - Though we need to have caution in how we proceed, the overreaction of this is all about me or the world is coming to an end attitude.

I wanted to share these fear signatures so you could recognize them for yourself or family members but especially with clients and potential clients and how it affects your business over the next few months. I will be sharing more about fear and how it masks itself and how it may affect your business and what you can control and get through this intact in your business. Confusion and complexity are something to be looked at and make our way through it. Those 3.5 years of working 6 -7 days a week after 9 - 11, were not about 9-11 but what 9-11 triggered in people I saw from their own fears from their past. What I know is that there is a way through this just like there was a way through it back then.  Read here and watch on social media how you can work your way through this and have outcomes that work for you.  They may not look like what you think it should look like but that happens all the time.