I have just returned from a lovely visit to Somerset, catching up with long term friends. Of course we are getting older and have more health ailments as the years go by, so much of our conversations included our slowly fading health. It really was more fun than it sounds! But our friends have settled into their retirement and moved south from London, to live a more quiet lifestyle. They don’t embrace change and find it very difficult to deal with. They like things to be as they always were, and to be fair in Somerset many aspects of life have stood still for some time, but even there they cannot escape the feeling of a constant changing life, and the uncertainty that can bring.
This took me back to my cancer diagnosis in 2007 when my life changed from being relatively routine, to not knowing from day to day what it would bring. This took a very long time to deal with. I haven’t accepted it still, but I have had to learn how to cope with it so that I can try and live a reasonable life. It now feels like I cannot deal with routine and crave the excitement of an ever changing life. Not regarding my health of course! My work has gone crazy, and I am delighted with the opportunities that are opening for myself and Your simPal. I don’t think I could be happier in my professional life, which is something I didn’t think I would be saying after 2007.
Dealing with constant change is something I have now got used to. I totally understand that most things are only temporary, and with that in mind, I am rarely disappointed. Professionally, people change jobs in the blink of an eye and the old days of building long term relationships are behind us. Even politicians don’t stay long these days, one day headline maker, next day chip wrapper. Doing my own presentations there are weeks of anticipation leading up to the event, but as soon as I am off stage that’s it! We are constantly searching for the next thing, not content with what we have. I believe that technology has made everything disposable, music, entertainment and even current news, in it’s chase to bring us something NEW.
This is particularly challenging when trying to run an organisation which needs to be one step ahead of the competition. We are continually looking at new ways of doing things and anything that will give us an edge. But we also need to consider the important issue of sustainability. Having worked for myself for so many years I feel I am in the perfect position to take advantage of current market conditions. We have no large organisation to worry about and can adjust quickly where required. I describe my own style as being ‘light on my feet,’ meaning that I am used to dealing with whatever comes my way. We have seen recently in the UK, examples of councils and governments needing to get things done quickly and being unable to, causing frustration to the public trying to deal with life changing circumstances.
It is important to understand what is happening here. We are entering times that we have never seen before. Previously we have been able to base most of our decision making on what has happened in the past. But we have seen nothing like the times we are in now. Information and communication at our finger tips is great but the real world will need time to catch up. We can send and receive an email from across the world in the time it takes to make a cup of coffee, it’s bonkers right? But practical things can’t happen like that, we have to understand that many systems don’t work in that way. We are certainly seeing how things can improve in healthcare, but the systems do not allow for change to happen quickly. Not always a bad thing to be fair, but we need to be looking at efficiency now, not constantly hiding behind red tape. This bureaucracy was originally there for our protection, but now it seems to hinder our progress.
My hospital is probably one of the best in London, yet I still see trollies of patient notes being wheeled around the hospital from department to department. How can that be right in this day and age? Old fashioned computers and lack of effective Wi-Fi are also two large hindrances to effective communication. Of course everything is about short term cost also but we need to look at the bigger picture too! We have the same issues with all our infrastructure in this country, purely short term views.
Change is happening quickly now, and we have to deal with it effectively. Corporate giants and large healthcare will have to consider how they structure their organisations going forward, to be able to react to this. Five year visions may no longer be as relevant as they were. Of course we need a direction of travel, but it may now be difficult to define the exact route, with so many things happening beyond our control. For younger people this is the life you know, but for many of us older people it may be quite difficult to accept the amount of change we are seeing now.
How are you dealing with change in your life? Are you embracing it or feeling lost? Please feel free to share your own views and experiences below.