Optimism is something which has not been much in evidence over the last few years with “permacrisis” being the word of the year for 2022. Still recovering from the collective trauma that was Covid only to be faced with the horror that is the war in Ukraine and the mounting environmental crisis there are many reasons why a slanket, the couch and Netflix are the only things which help to numb the unease. Throw in the recent tech layoffs (or rumours of ) then it is very easy to descend into a dark, cynical place. But the problem with that cynicism is that it lacks the energy and motivation we need to actually solve these huge problems we have (did I mention the housing crisis?).
The other problem is the constant newscycle and omnipresent social media scroll makes it feel like it is all going to hell right here, right now. The result for many people is stasis. Sapped of energy from recent and current events, unsure of what the future will hold many people simply put decisions on pause. Rather then reach for action they hold and play a waiting game.
There are a couple of problems with this. One, no one knows what the future will hold either good or bad. I read with interest the Financial Times look back on their predictions for 2022. Out of 20 they only got 5 wrong. But of the 5 they got wrong? They thought Putin would never invade Ukraine. A pretty big one to miss. Although of course rational but rational thinking and war rarely come together. So no one knows what the future will hold. Secondly, it robs us of the ability to enact small but positive changes. Just waiting and worrying will not get that CV updated or grow the business in a new direction or actually help anyone who could do with that help right here and right now.
So if you do want to make a change, be it job related or otherwise, today is the day to shuck off the slanket and go for it. It is too easy to be mired in analysis paralysis. No one could have predicted Covid or recent tech layoffs, so who knows what the next year will hold either. Signs are already emerging from the US about positive economic indicators. So there is a lot to be said for turning off the news and thinking about what change is important to you. Then tell other people about that change and see if there is something you can do together.
I am going to talk about my own predictions for 2023 in next week’s newsletter but for now thank you for reading and if you like it, please do let me know.
Finally, a round up of things we are talking about in the WorkJuggle office.
What we are Reading
“Bittersweet: How Sorrow & Longing Make us Whole” by Susan Cain, from the marvellous author of “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t stop Talking”. It is a fascinating counterintuitive look at the upside of sadness and why we are drawn to melancholic music and what that can mean for our own creativity. If you find yourself welling up at sentimental Christmas ads (or is this just me?) then this one is for you.
What we are Watching
White Lotus Season 2, pure gorgeous escapism in warm Sicilian sunshine. Can think of no better TV for the month of January. I want everyone’s stylish clothes (apart from Portia’s obviously).
What we are Listening To
“Off Air” the new podcast from Jane Garvey and Fi Glover. Their fabulous witterings of the BBC “Fortunately” podcast has a new home. I had been mourning the loss of Fortunately with Lucy Murphy, who helps manage our social media, when she told me they were on Spotify and still chatting away it literally made my week! I love their view on the world and it never fails to make me laugh.
Till next week,