With this week’s spotlight on the value of checking in with others, I remembered what it was like when my colleague tapped me on the shoulder and asked.
It was a big time in my life. Mum was coming through chemo treatment, and my brother and I were both in the family home supporting her. I also was consulting and training teams interstate.
I hadn’t noticed any change in me. I was just pushing through, getting on with it. Anyway, mum was going well and our client was wonderful. All must be good, right?
So it took a step out of the office, a coffee, and Emma asking me how I was. She said she’d noticed I was a flat compared with my usual bubbly self. She explained how caring for someone adds to our load.
At first, I froze: “Oh gosh! Have I done a bad job? Am I not performing well. I don’t want to let anyone down.”
But it wasn’t about the quality of my work. It was about her caring to notice something was different with me. My little bubbly spark seemed a bit dull.
So, feeling a bit teary, I sat back and listened.
I acknowledged I wasn’t super human. Sometimes your cup is just that bit too full.
And then, I took Emma’s advice and took a week off. To rest, recover and recharge.
To empty that cup a bit.
I really valued having a caring colleague who took time to ask. And there is value for us who are on the receiving end, when we shift our mindset to welcoming these conversations too.
Because … we really are better together
Please send a note or call me, if there’s anything I can do to support you mentally or emotionally. A chat may be all you need to breath in some space to know you can be ok.