Not “solutioning” anything right now

I’m not solutioning now. “Solutioning” is what you do to a problem: you solution it.

That’s not a thing, by the way, or even a word. But I’ve heard people use it. Many years ago, a colleague adopted it, ironically, and it stuck in our little company. He sounded like Bill Lumbergh. Used unconsciously, it sounds like a combination of strained “positivity,” stubbornness, and denial.

I’m not solutioning because after scrambling to make sense of this stay-at-home/go-virtual experience, things are getting interesting. Maybe now, some of the initial shock of this emergency has diminished for you. It has for me. I have been through weeks in which frantic activity gave way to confusion, then anger, and until a couple days ago, a sense that maybe what I was doing before the coronavirus pandemic was mostly self-interested busywork. Strong words, I know. That was a few days ago. But it genuinely felt that way.

Now I can notice things. Those reactions got in the way. And so did that “normal life” that we have all left behind. I notice…

  • We rely on familiar routines to reassure us that we’re okay. When conditions change, we don’t know who we are. This is a frightening feeling. It may also be accurate.
  • We hold really tightly to a set of measures of our worth. We don’t know them very well. Some we don’t know at all. We fight back by trying to prove we’re somebody. We become despondent or worse when that’s impossible.

And by “we” I mean “I.” But try these on as hypotheses. Take a closer look and see for yourself.

What should we do about it? I’m not sure.

Since I can’t do much, I’ll do my best to keep watching. Maybe we should see this time as between one thing that’s ending and something that’s beginning. What if that thing that’s ending and beginning is me?

I’m trying to take the attitude that it is interesting to witness my life.

Not as I wish it were, but as it is today. Not to find a way to be more productive. Not work at being who I think I should be. Not to work at being who someone else thinks I should be.

We could give some attention to the kind of experiences that so-called normal life allowed us to miss, intentionally or otherwise. Right now, they are hard to miss, if we’re willing to look.

Ahem. Click the image to learn more.

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