Navigating the “Bubbles” Staying Grounded Amidst Diverse Roles

In today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy to find oneself caught in various “bubbles” — distinct spheres of influence and interest that can sometimes seem worlds apart. Whether it’s politics, work, community involvement, or personal passions, balancing these aspects while staying true to oneself can be a significant challenge. As someone who wears many hats, I’ve learned a few valuable lessons about remaining grounded amidst these diverse roles and the importance of recognising that at the heart of it all, we are just people.

The Political Bubble – Advocacy and Community Engagement

Politics is an arena where passions run high, and it’s easy to get swept up in the fervor of advocacy and community engagement. As a Councillor, I find that navigating this bubble requires a delicate balance of listening and leading. The key is to stay connected to the community’s needs and voices. Grounding myself in the stories and experiences of the people I represent ensures that my decisions and actions remain anchored in genuine concern and commitment to positive change. It’s crucial to remember that every person I interact with is just that — a person, not a VIP or a mere statistic.

The Professional Bubble – Leadership and Strategic Planning

In my professional life, particularly as the CEO of Tender Loving Care , the focus shifts to strategic planning, leadership, and execution. The challenge here is maintaining a holistic view while managing day-to-day operations. It’s easy to get caught up in metrics, goals, and deliverables. To stay grounded, I prioritise time for reflection and feedback, ensuring that TLC’s mission and vision remain the guiding principles behind every strategy. It’s also important to see every colleague, partner, and client as equals, each contributing uniquely to our shared goals.

The Community Bubble – Sports and Volunteering

My involvement with the Sutherland Shire Football Association and various community committees introduces another layer of engagement. This bubble is driven by passion and a desire to empower through sports and community activities. Staying grounded here means promoting inclusivity and excellence while remembering the fundamental joy that these activities bring to people’s lives. Celebrating small victories and recognising the efforts of volunteers helps maintain a connection to the grassroots level. In these spaces, I endeavour to emphasize that everyone’s contribution is invaluable, and no one person is more important than another.

The Personal Bubble – Advocacy for Rare Diseases

Advocating for Fibrous Dysplasia McCune-Albright Syndrome and serving as the Founder of FDMASAustralia adds a deeply personal dimension to my roles. This bubble is filled with emotional connections and personal stories. To remain grounded, I focus on the broader impact of my advocacy work, endeavouring to Amplify the voices of those affected and driving research and support initiatives. Personal passion fuels this bubble, and it’s essential to channel that energy into constructive actions and tangible outcomes. Here, too, recognising the humanity in everyone I meet is paramount. There are no VIPs in this fight, just individuals united by a common cause.

The Family Bubble: Being a Nan, Mum, Wife, Daughter, Sister, Aunty, Cousin, Niece

Perhaps the most important bubble of all is my family. Being a Nan, Mum, Wife, Daughter, Sister, Aunty, Cousin, Niece brings immense joy and fulfillment, but it also requires patience, understanding, and love. This bubble is where I find my greatest support system and where I am reminded of the simple yet profound connections that bind us. To stay grounded, I prioritise family time, cherishing the moments we share and the lessons we learn from each other. In the family bubble, there are no titles or roles, just the pure, unfiltered essence of being together.

Balancing Act – Tips for Staying Grounded

Prioritising Self-Care – Amidst all these roles, I have learnt that it’s crucial to prioritise self-care. I have to take time for myself – even 10 minutes to ensure that I have the energy and mental clarity to give my best to each bubble.

Staying Connected: Regularly engaging with the community, whether through listening sessions, community events, or informal conversations, keeps me grounded in reality and aware of the actual impact of my work. Everyone’s voice matters equally.

Reflecting and Realigning – Periodically reflecting on my roles and their alignment with my core values helps me stay true to my mission. I find that it is essential to reassess and realign goals to ensure they are still relevant and meaningful.

Embracing Humility: Recognising that I don’t have all the answers and being open to learning from others promotes a culture of continuous improvement and humility.

Navigating these bubbles is no easy task, but it’s a journey that I cherish. Each role brings its unique challenges and rewards, and staying grounded is about finding harmony amidst the diversity. By prioritising authenticity, community connection, and continuous reflection, I endeavour to make a meaningful impact in every sphere I am part of.

In all these bubbles, the common thread is kindness and the commitment to making a positive difference. As I often say, “You can be something.” It’s a reminder that regardless of the roles we play, we have the power to contribute meaningfully and stay true to ourselves. And most importantly, it’s a reminder that we are all just people, each with our own story, our own value, and our own unique contributions to make.

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Contact Laura Cowell