President's Message - Spring 2020

NYACP President’s Message...

 
Andrea Vacca | President

Dear Members,

Over the past 2 weeks or so, our worlds have seemed to grow geographically smaller with each passing day.  At the same, time I’ve seen our community of collaborative professionals connecting, communicating and supporting each other like never before.

Our NYC and Westchester Pods quickly pivoted to Zoom calls to give our members a chance to talk about COVID-19 and the impact it was having on our professional and personal lives.  Our NYACP Board of Directors conducted its meeting by Zoom as well, as did our newly formed NYC Support Group for Collaborative Professionals.

As collaborative professionals, we’re used to supporting our clients during times when they feel their entire world has turned upside down and it is unrecognizable to them. We’re now called upon to support our clients when our own lives are unrecognizable as well. The trauma we’re feeling is no longer vicarious.  We’re all in this together.

This past week, I’ve had the opportunity to be on Zoom calls with leaders and other members of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.  IACP President, Francesca King, who lives and works in Milan, has talked about living with COVID-19 as it has moved through her city and country. She explained that, when the virus forced everyone to shelter in place, collaborative professionals in Milan quickly moved their meetings and events to online platforms and tried their best to conduct business as usual. But then some sort of exhaustion set in and she saw herself and others needing to step back a bit, take a break.  They needed to give themselves some space to deal with everything they were feeling and experiencing.  She further explained that meetings and events have been picking up again, but that people’s energy levels may be different day to day and not always in sync with others.  What I heard as she explained all of this is one simple fact:  We’re Human.  And we are going to need to give ourselves, our colleagues, and our clients the time and space that’s individually needed as we move into and through this time of transition.

It’s more important than ever that we take care of ourselves, both physically and emotionally. That can mean meditation, journaling, making sure you’re still exercising and getting outside at least once a day for fresh air. It can mean sleeping a little longer in the morning and connecting with friends and family who you may not have seen or spoken to for weeks or months at a time.  It can mean picking up the phone to talk to friends, rather than texting.

And it may mean, occasionally, that we say no to every Zoom meeting and webinar that well intentioned colleagues are hosting. 

There’s a lot of fear that’s coming up for many of us professionally. The phones may not be ringing with as many (or any) new clients right now, but I promise you they will again.  Our existing and former clients are going to have conflicts come up that they need help resolving and they know that the courts cannot help them.  Future clients are out there waiting for the shelter in place orders to lift so that they can move forward with those divorces they’ve been contemplating for months or years.  We’re going to be needed in great demand and we need to be ready to support our clients.

So what are you doing to take care of yourself? Let’s use the NYACP list serve to share information that you’ve found helpful and ask for support from others. And please don’t hesitate to reach out to me personally at [email protected] or to our Executive Director, Abby Curro, at [email protected], with questions or suggestions about how NYACP can help.  Let’s share and support each other through this difficult time and let’s come out stronger on the other side.

Sincerely,

Andrea Vacca
NYACP President