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During the Coronavirus Pandemic, Take a Moment to Breathe
The pandemic has been with us for months, and will be with us for months yet. The news is relentless and everyone is caught in the crucible of facing the unknown, having to adapt to new circumstances, and pivoting every day, all day long. It’s a bit much. But when I think of opening my mouth to complain, I first remind myself to be grateful for my health and that of my family. And I think about all the facility managers out there, hustling hard in the face of all that uncertainty and facing unquantifiable risks to make sure our world keeps working. (Thank you!)
For the cover story this month, we profile Alishia Jolivette with the Houston Independent School District. She has been facing adversity for years now, yet every time I spoke with her or sat on a panel with her, she carried with her a deep calm. I knew she had a million things going on as she is trying to open her district back up amidst a pandemic, but not a single note of fluster or frustration filtered through.
Several times she mentioned how over the years she needed to take a minute or 10 to just breathe when confronted with a challenge. It spoke to her compassion for the person presenting her with the challenging situation, for her care in her response, and to the importance of self-care.
Facilities don't stop, for anything. In this issue, we talk about how to make sure you don’t wreck your boiler, how to optimize your restrooms against COVID-19, how to start tackling net-zero in hospitals. But first, take a minute. Center yourself. Just breathe.
One of my earliest memories of Building Operating Management was sitting down in the break room of the downtown Chicago office where I was a brand new facilities coordinator to flip through industry magazines and figure out just what exactly I’d gotten myself into. I’d trained as a journalist and an idea started that maybe I could write for the magazine someday.
A lucky 13 years later, I’m writing this message. Building Operating Management is your magazine. It exists to serve your needs, pique your interest, highlight your achievements, and help you grow in your path. To borrow words from Alishia, tell me what you need so we can get through this together.
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