by Marion Aufseesser | May 20, 2020 | COVID-19, Deconfinement
Deconfinement without jams!
It’s again a special week. Like all previous weeks but this one has a particular flavour. Why is this week different from all other weeks? Because, in my country of residence, (Switzerland) deconfinement from our semi-confinement has begun.
What is the impact on our daily life in AC-19 read after Covid-19?
In addition to a return to “BC-19” (read before Covid-19) traffic level, I observed an overall very aggressive road behaviour, particularly towards bicycle riders. Lots of hooting too.
“AC-19” sees the beginning of a new era. We’ll certainly be witnessing lots of changes compared to BC-19.
Some of the changes are definitely positive. Such as seeing friends again and socializing responsibly, being nicer with each other, smiling, smiling with our eyes. Living through this pandemic together brought us closer, discovering that we could live differently, work differently, discover abilities we didn’t know we had, or simply slowing down. We are full of hope and good resolutions for this new era.
Of course, not everything is better and most likely this includes the way we feel about our safety. Is it safe to deconfine? Is it the right timing? Do we all have enough masks, will we get access to tests? Uncertainty and anxiety are words often cited at this moment. We fear for our health and our loved ones’. Yes, deconfining can trigger anxiety as we, despite the sometimes-harsh conditions, got used to our new living conditions. And now what?
Interestingly enough deconfinement comes with its loads of questions. We feel confused by the often contradicting messages we hear from the authorities and news.
Deconfinement comes with different kinds of jams. Traffic jams, jam lines in front of shops, jam lines basically anywhere you need to go inside and do something. The general jamming can cause aggressive behavior, decompensating from confinement? Frustration? Fear?
Fear for some of us going back to the office. Going to places, taking jammed up public transportation where it may be impossible to keep the social distancing required, and where not everyone is wearing a mask (not mandatory in our country). And the risk for some and a reality for others, losing one’s job now. AC-19 comes with a lot of workforce adjustments and we deeply regret if you have been notified with a termination of employment. Or if you find yourself in the difficult position to set up a layoff plan.
How are we going to adapt to our AC-19 life?
If you haven’t yet filled out PNKR © (http://www.transitionkit.com/pnkr_tk_editeng/) it’s the last moment to do so before your brain forgets and transforms your memories of what confinement did to you in positive as well as negative aspects during Covid-19.
It appears that we are pondering our actions more: we are thinking differently before acting. Do I really need to …go somewhere, buy something? Whatever it is we think we need.
If I really need -or just want to? – run that errand when is the best time to do it?
Online shopping versus brick and mortar stores? If we are choosing to go to a real store because we need to try the product before buying, we might adapt our schedule to avoid jamming. Or like millennials, choosing to favor online shopping whenever possible.
Do I really need to …go somewhere, buy something?
In Switzerland, online grocery shopping has become very popular since about 15 years and obviously even more so since the beginning of Covid-19. At the same time, we see an ever-growing number of local producers organizing home delivery to counter the loss of clients wanting to queue up and those not satisfied with the longer delivery times offered by the online stores.
Interestingly, in Geneva, authorities have decided to introduce larger bicycle lanes, to facilitate use of bicycles and anticipate on the fear that the population might feel about public transportation. This is a major change, here in Geneva. We can easily imagine that the same is happening in more countries.
We now see masked security agents at the entrance of stores with disinfecting lotion to be put on our hands.
This generates inevitable queuing lines, steel barriers, markings on the floor everywhere. You know like the ones, when we used to go to see a show, or we went to a sports event. The difference is that, in BC-19 times we were hoarded and pushed each other. Remember?
Now, in AC-19, we politely smile at each other from behind our masks.
Luckily, if we haven’t had a facelift our eyes will smile back … thank goodness for that.
Some human emotional element can be seen even with a mask on.
To read more on smiles and eyes movement, check the web for real or fake smiling and eye movement articles. (https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/general/spotting-a-duchenne-smile-how-to-identify-a-genuine-smile/)
The information could come in handy especially if you are in a working environment with a mask on policy.
We will adapt. Humans will adapt. That is what stress processing is all about in human beings. Remind me to write about resilience and coping with AC-19 stress soon.
Take good care of yourself until we meet next week,
by Marion Aufseesser | May 8, 2020 | COVID-19
Another confinement week flew by.
I promised myself to be at your side all through COVID-19 with an article per week.
It’s my contribution to being supportive to the community.
I first described PET’s & ANT’s in my book written in French (Link) and I read something similar in a book by A. Grant.
Positive Expected Thoughts (PETs), if you have more of these you may be more of an optimist, and Automatic Negative Thoughts (ANT’s), if you have more of these you may be a little bit more inclined to be a pessimist, a worrier or anxious.
Most of us are a bit of both and that’s ok, as long as our ANT’s don’t interfere too much with on getting on with life.
Our lives are made up of good and not such good times. (See the Rollercoaster article)
Life’s rollercoaster can be compared to a child’s toy, the yoyo. A yoyo goes up and down. Sometimes knots form in the string. In life, these “knots” are the obstacles we meet. They can be internal, such as health problems, or external, for example unwanted situations we find ourselves in and then have to cope with.
During COVID-19 many of us are experiencing both internal and external events impacting our life and/or closes one’s lives.
Understanding ANT’s and PET’s helps us identify the mechanism that triggers our reactions given any situation and breaking away from the vicious circles PET’s entails.
Being able to adapt to the ups and downs of life is what brings us serenity and prevents negative stress building up.
A child usually instinctively knows what to do when his yoyo gets into a knot. As adults, we don’t always know how to react when “life knots” appear. Should we carry on trying, or stop and ask for help?
If you are stuck, asking for help is far more beneficial.
People with PETs are usually energetic and enthusiastic. Their Positive Expected Thoughts, help them see that doors will soon be opening. PETs get us moving in search of solutions.
When we have ANTs, or Automatic Negative Thoughts, we are stuck in vicious circles. Our “engine” is at a standstill and we have trouble rebooting it again.
We go around in circles, without being able to do anything to get moving again.
Many of us experience periods in life when nothing goes the way we want it to go.
“My company is in a bad way. Lots of employees are going to get sacked… If I’m one of them, I’m sure I’ll never be able to find a new job… at my age… with the same salary! What on earth am I going to do? I’ll never be able to cope!”
Which path to take: ANTs or PETs?
Transforming automatic negative thoughts into positive expected thoughts is similar to changing one’s outlook on the half empty glass into a half full one!
It’s all a matter of perspective, and positive projections.
If you are more PETs than ANTs keep it up. Being realistically positive is a great way to face life’s challenges.
If you are more ANTs than PETs become a “copycat”, watch and imitate that person who is always so positive. Talk about it with that friend. Start small. Give yourself time. Changing old ingrained behaviors and thought patterns is hard work. If you’ve been living with lots of ANT’s it may take some time to lose the habit.
If you need support, do get in touch with me.
Maybe in your country’s deconfinement is starting. Take the opportunity of this new beginning to stick to the PNKR’s (click here) you described a few weeks ago when you did the exercise described in the PNKR article.
Post Covid-19 gives us all an opportunity to do things differently. It’s a new era.
“Just do it now “and let go of those internal barriers you have put up and may have been fighting against for years.
Take care and do remember, your comments and shares are important to me.
Coaching Psychologist FSP/ASPCo
Mob: +41(0)79 342 50 92
by Marion Aufseesser | Apr 27, 2020 | COVID-19, Training
How to optimize your networking during and after COVID-19
After the success of my video training 10 days ago, and my other articles on coping with COVID-19, here’s 6 tips for COVID-19 and post COVID-19 networking written for you.
I am sure you know a lot about networking already. Hopefully the info and insights I am about to share with you will add value, supporting you specifically in these pandemic times.
6 Tips for networking during COVID-19
You can’t go outside, so go inside: Go on LinkedIn and follow webinars…
If you’re not on LinkedIn, now is the time to join. This platform is catching tremendous momentum and is a must! And free. We can help you with teaching more about LinkedIn in our booster tailor-made virtual and other workshops.
- How do LinkedIn and “Zoominars” work for networking?
- How are we each other’s “net workers”?
- Why is it vital to network now?
Networking through LinkedIn and webinars:
- From the reader’s point of view:
- You get to share your opinion and also get known and hence grow your network as people will reach out to you too by leaving comments and participating in the chats. Even better, they might even repost your message.
- From the author’s point of view:
- The author needs food for thought to keep the fire burning: Please give me feedback allowing me to know your needs and then respond to those needs.
Ask yourself: Do you or don’t you like to network?
- If your answer is NO you may be more of an introvert, or shy. If it is blocking you, do get in touch and we can work on the issue and help you in private sessions.
- If your answer is YES you may be more of an extravert and appreciate meeting new people. If you thrive on networking you may be a connector, networking comes naturally to you.
- Now is the time to reach out and meet new people, even make new friends and colleagues via LinkedIn and all the different webinars, events online being offered.
- Our physical social interactions are still very limited right now. Use LinkedIn and video conferencing to socialize in the meantime.
How can you network successfully during COVID-19?
- Join online events that are meaningful to you.
- Join events where there is interaction, break out groups
- Join events where you can chat individually with participants and strike up a conversation.
(I needed to send flowers to another city and found a great florist like this, and a “Zoominar” participant found a dentist)
Practice makes Perfect
- The more you network, usually the better you become at it. It’s often the first step that is difficult when “entering a room”.
- In today’s virtual world, networking events may be easier to “go to” than with in person networking. Check my PNKR post: Positive aspect of confinement.
- So, go out and onto your platforms and practice. It’s like learning to swim. You won’t drown, you may get wet.
- The risk you are taking is negligible. You won’t be distracted by unexpected disturbance, and in the comfort of your home office, you will feel empowered to go more towards people that you might have avoided in a physical meeting or convention.
- If your apprehension of networking gets worse and you have to network, get in touch and we will sort it out. Usually in a few sessions you will understand why you hate networking and overcome that fear of failing.
Know who you want to connect with
- Shortlist and identify people you want to interact with.
- First try and contact people on the shortlist.
- Know your 20 sec pitch for each person you want to meet. (Elevator Pitch)
- Be sure to be able to reconnect after the event via LinkedIn.
- Give first before asking for something. You will either receive in return from that person or… in some other way, at some other time good will come of it.
Looking forward to your comments and I will be back next week.
Please follow me on www.transitionkit.com
Pour le français merci d’utiliser la fonction traduction de LinkedIn
Vous pouvez commander mon livre Rebondir : Réussir votre transition professionnelle, Odile Jacob sur le site de la FNAC ou commandez-le chez votre libraire préféré.
by Marion Aufseesser | Apr 21, 2020 | COVID-19, Training
Sorting out Positive and Negatives: Write up your COVID-19 PNKR sheet…
Dear Readers, Friends, Colleagues and Family,
Once again thanks for reading me.
To those of you who have lost a family member my condolences. To those of you who were ill I hope you are feeling better or are on way to recovery.
Check my first article on the confinement roller coaster emotions. It may be helpful to better understand and cope with all your emotions. (https://www.transitionkit.com/covid-19the-confinement-roller-coaster-wave/)
These are very hard times for you.
COVID-19 confinement will however provide valuable feedback on how you coped, reacted and evolved.
How are you adapting and reacting to the confinement?
Where do you live and what kind of confinement are you in?
In France a stricter confinement is much more difficult to live with, especially if you are in a big city and small apartment with three young children for example.
In Switzerland we are fortunate enough to still be able to walk around our neighborhoods freely, making sure to obey to social distancing rules.
What about all of you in USA, UK, Australia, Africa or wherever you are! Do let us know how you are experiencing your confinement.
We are starting to hear about the progressive deconfinement in certain countries. How do you feel about deconfinement? Are you looking forward to it? Does the idea of deconfining add stress and anxiety to your current life now?
No matter where we are and however we feel about it, we are all on the emotional roller coaster.
We may be reacting both positively and negatively depending on the day or the issues we are having to deal with on a given day.
There may be some positive aspects in your life right now. Therefore, in this post, I am inviting you to write up a balance sheet (we call it PNKR-read pinker) with the positives you want to keep in post COVID-19 life the negatives you will be pleased to see leave your current life.
If you live in a household with others, I suggest you all write your balance sheet and then discuss. It can be an interesting discussion. No arguments please – just calm discussions, which make us wiser, warmer and more caring.
I would be delighted to host a zoom meeting on POSITIVES AND NEGATIVES OF COVID-19 Where we could meet and discuss YOUR balance sheets.
Please send me an email if you wish to participate on FRIDAY 24th April at 17.00 ZURICH/GENEVA time zone and we will send you a zoom invitation to participate.
Click here to send us your email for the Zoom Session
Take care – stay safe- when deconfining follow best practices-
by Marion Aufseesser | Apr 13, 2020 | COVID-19, Training
HOW TO OPTIMISE YOUR VIDEO RECORDINGS
The 6 step program to make successful video recordings from working@home (and a pleasure for those watching you!): Do’s and Don’ts
Once again thanks for spending some of your precious time with me.
I originally wrote this article for my candidates going through remote interviewing for jobs some years ago!
COVID-19 has changed business practices, therefore I have adapted this short video training manual to the current working@home situation.
This information should be of value to many readers, even seasoned TV presenters and big-time celebrities could benefit from it when I see their home-made videos!!
Many people have an interesting message to share, but many don’t come across well. That’s a pity…
So, let’s dive in!
Any form of filming demands a lot of preparation. Virtual meetings and interviews need careful preparation as the interaction will be different given that you and the other parties won’t be in the same room (by definition). The “chemistry” or human bond that one might usually feel will be missing.
It is important to do the best to make up for this missing “human factor”. We are all – and I mean practically all – telecommuting all over the world. Work practices have changed literally overnight for many of us. All meetings are taking place through the various video conferencing software. Many of us are using Teams®, Zoom®, Skype®, Meet®, etc. or secured inhouse systems.
Master rule for all meetings: Be on Time!!!
STEP 1: SOFTWARE
What software are you using? Is it secured and encrypted? Are you familiar with it?
STEP 2: SET UP
Internet connection, make sure it is optimal from your work station
Back Drop: Think of it as an element that will enhance your appearance. It should be neutral and should not interfere with you. Avoid a messy background.
Video positioning: Keep an “arms’ length” from your camera. Avoid image distortions.
Height: check the height of your installation- often times one will see more of the ceiling of nostrils, than the face of the person! As a general rule, you always want the lens of your camera to shoot you slightly from above, not the opposite and your face and shoulders are what you want people to see in this type of situation.
Noise and interruptions: Choose a quiet place for your video, no phones, doorbells, children, work colleagues, etc.
Lighting: Take light conditions into consideration. Avoid reflections and glares.
Dress code: It is important to wear an outfit with solid colors. Not too flashy. Watch any good TV presenter and you will remark that they usually wear a top with solid colors, not too bright.
For ladies: I recommend a shirt or round collar and sleeves. The advantage of the round collar: it usually stays in place. Be careful with dangling earrings and choose any jewelry carefully. Understatement is preferred.
For men I recommend a solid colored shirt- stripes, squares, etc. are distracting – unless you want to make a statement. Either with or without a blazer or as many doctors (if you are one) with your white hospital blouse.
Branding: Unless you are an influencer and being paid for wearing a brand I suggest keeping away from branding on your shirt – true for ladies and gentlemen alike.
Step 3: IDENTIFY THE MEETING YOU’RE HAVING
What is the nature of the meeting?
Regular weekly business; meeting with the usual participants; meeting with someone you know well and often work with; meeting with someone you have also had email/phone calls with but no visual contact; meeting with a person you have never had contact with…
Being interviewed by television, Youtube®, self-promotion…
Adapt your speech and message to every audience
Step 4: PRESENCE OPTIMIZATION
Most people don’t speak loud enough. You want to convey an image of confidence and a stronger voice will help. Maintaining a clear and strong voice will allow your diction to be clearer as you want to avoid stuttering or munching your words.
Test it with someone before, fine tune as you don’t want to shout either!
Along with a strong voice, looking directly at your camera is important. Don’t look at a particular person. This is important to understand when there are several people in the video meeting.
During introduction of meeting attendees, think about acknowledging the entire audience, (Hi Mrs. Daniels, nice to see you again, Hello Mr. Osborne, etc.). This is when you can be personal when several people assist in the video conferencing.
When video recording always focus, look at your camera and not your screen.
Step 5: WHO WILL YOU BE SEEING? BE PREPARED!
Know as much about the other parties participating as possible. This is especially important in job interviewing and/or negotiating through video conferencing.
Get names of people attending the meeting beforehand whenever possible. Most business people will be on LinkedIn® or Google® with a photo.
When zooming for example, be aware that some people may appear with an ID number and not their name.
Step 6: Questions and Answers
Imagine the scenario of the video meeting you will shortly be having.
Write down at least 10 questions you expect to discuss.
Write down in full the answers you would give if you are not used to live videoing.
For every question you should know exactly what the KEY MESSAGES are that you need to deliver in very brief and clear short sentences.
If English is not your mother tongue and the video recording is in English this is even more important.
Each question has a key message in its answer. One question: one message in your answer! The more technical the question, the more this is important for the answer.
Practice makes perfect: REHEARSE!!
Read /talk your answers into your computer, tablet, smartphone … The important thing is to record yourself – preferably with the image. Then listen to yourself.
Do the same exercise for questions you would rather NOT be asked. These are the hard ones. Again, do the exercise in writing. Practice and record.
It is important to realize that most people think they know what they will answer. However, if they have not prepared the KEY messages they want to convey in a very brief answer, people have to think during the interview.
The trick of the methodology of this interview training is that you prepare BEFORE the interview. In the interview you should not be “surprised” by the questions the interviewers are asking you.
It is the interviewee’s job, your job to think beforehand WHAT will the interviewer ask, how will he ask it.
In the case of a video interview, where there may be a panel of interviewers, you will need to have done exercises with a panel team and see how you come across, how you focus on the interviewers, where to look in the camera.
It is also extremely important to LISTEN VERY CAREFULLY to the interviewer’s questions.
In an interview we may be nervous. The better prepared we are, the less nervous we will be.
Listening carefully is like reading the questions of an exam.
If you are not sure you understood the interviewer’s question, repeat the question to the interviewer for example.
« If I understood correctly, you would like me to explain why I am so interested in this position »; “You would like to know how I managed to….” ; “You would like me to describe in detail…. “; “You would want me to evaluate…. “
And do Keep in Touch with me. I value your likes, shares, recommendations and most of all your suggestions you would like to hear about.
by Marion Aufseesser | Apr 10, 2020 | COVID-19
Encore une fois, merci de m’avoir prêté un peu de votre précieux temps.
Pour beaucoup d’entre nous, ce sera un long week-end et/ou une “période de vacances” car c’est le week-end de Pâques qui, cette année, coïncide avec la Pâque juive.
Permettez-moi d’adresser mes meilleurs vœux à tous ceux qui célèbrent l’une ou l’autre de ces fêtes ou les deux.
À tous les autres, je souhaite également un week-end reposant, où que vous soyez !
En ces temps difficiles de COVID-19, nous devons faire preuve d’ingéniosité afin de maintenir notre énergie positive à un niveau élevé et notre STRESS négatif aussi bas que possible.
Chaque fois que vous le pouvez, soyez attentifs aux changements positifs qui se produisent au milieu de cette crise. Espérons que la plupart d’entre vous seront en mesure d’en identifier quelques-uns.
À ceux d’entre vous dont la douleur, la tristesse ou les circonstances dramatiques vous frappent, j’adresse mes pensées les plus sincères.
Peut-être qu’aujourd’hui vous êtes plus proches en tant que famille, peut-être avez-vous, ce que j’appelle des “discussions sérieuses”, des discussions significatives, peut-être que comme beaucoup, vous prenez réellement mieux soin de vous et des autres, vous parlez et vous vous occupez de vos connaissances plus âgées et solitaires, de vos voisins, des membres de votre famille, de vos collègues…
Donnez du temps aux autres pour réduire votre PROPRE stress négatif lorsque vous vous occupez d’eux. Outil majeur pour prévenir l’anxiété et la dépression, c’est ce que nous appelons la GRATITUDE. C’est un modérateur de stress très efficace.
Faites-vous plaisir aussi : prenez ce livre que vous dites depuis des lustres que vous vouliez lire ; peignez ce tableau ; écrivez ce poème, apprenez cette compétence, ce langage ou ce qui vous convient. Réconciliez-vous avec la personne avec laquelle vous vous étiez brouillé et pardonnez…
C’est mon message psychologique positif et réaliste pour cette semaine !
La semaine prochaine, je vous ferai part de mes réflexions sur le PROGRAMME EN 6 ÉTAPES visant à améliorer votre image lorsque vous utilisez toute forme d’ENREGISTREMENT VIDÉO.
Joyeuses Pâques! Profitez de votre long week-end, et restez en sécurité !