Awkward Conversations

Even as we come to terms with the virus, social distancing, and get used to the new normal, the challenges seem to keep coming. As each one of us is different and unique, we respond; differently, it is essential to have awkward conversations this season. 

One of the significant awkward conversations I had was with my older son after my younger son passed away. Being the resilient and active girl, this was a difficult phase as I did not have the resources or the time to pursue my dreams. I remember having the awkward conversation with my totally, dependant older son of how we needed to become independent of each other. Yes, in my plans, I had thought of a sibling for him to give him company as I went back to my dreams of using my skills in a professional setup. The death of his sibling was unexpected and sad… But we needed to take stock and move ahead as we were living and had a lifetime ahead of us. After I described how it would help me to look for a job and get back to work even as in a few years he would be leaving for University. Starting then would be too late for me. I am grateful for having this conversation with my son as it has helped us become a better version of ourselves. It has also increased our trust, love and openness between us. As a parent, it has helped me empower my son… and understand my son better. It has also opened a channel where he can share his dreams with me.

Even as I went back to working as a project manager, these awkward conversations became a part of my life. Be it with the customers, support or technical team; these conversations decided how we moved forward as a company. 

So what are some of the awkward conversations we will need to have this season? Now with the pandemic and the economic downturn, some of the discussions would be around salary cuts and job loss and life in general. It is good to have the whole family come up with a solution to move forward. It also helps to keep relevant parties involved if things are going to change.

Some guidelines to keep in mind.

  • Truth always hurts. It is better to hurt those you love upfront rather than being found out later when the hurt and damage is more significant. 
  • Never make the situation personal, political or spiritual. Accept reality. It helps to find a way forward with a clear mind.
  • Even if we are dealt an unfair deal, sometimes it is pointless to fight for our rights. Instead, find a way to move forward, ensuring you don’t get yourself into a similar position again. 
  • Never compromise your values for short term gains.
  • Be aware of the changes in your jobs and see how the future market will look like. Acquire skills that will help you be relevant in the changing job scene.
  • Look long term and if changes need to be made, take the risk and move forward. 
  • With time, let your actions silence those who don’t see your point of view. 

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