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  • Writer's pictureFenella Trevillion

Why Outsource? Is now the time for personal change?Activities during the second week of Lock Down…

Updated: Jun 9, 2020

Yesterday I spent three hours attempting to connect a WiFi repeater to enhance my broadband speed. This was on top of the two hours I spent on it the previous day, 45 minutes of which was on the phone trying to contact my IT support provider without success.

During this time amongst my various methodologies of approaching the problem, I saw one on the internet this seemed different from the others, I wondered about using it however, the risk averse self said ‘what if you mess up the internet for both of us when we utterly rely on it?’, I decided not to go there, not at this time of lockdown and huge internet traffic without internet support.

Part of my gathering ‘help’ with this problem was contacting my daughter in law, a digital fundi, even though she told me twice that she did not know about WiFi repeaters, I continued to ask for ‘help’ saying ‘you know the language of the digital world and all these words mean nothing to me..’ she suggested I search for explanations on the internet and find out…. ‘Awwwh! I didn’t think of that..’

Next person to lean on for ‘help’, my brother in Prague. We spent a couple of hours one on the What’s App line, the other on Zoom so he could read the paper instructions trying to work it out; in the meantime I run up and down stairs with my computer plugging in the repeater here and there whilst he compared the paper steps 1-7 to other instructions found on the internet. I mentioned the suggestion of pressing the WPS button on the repeater and on the one on the modem I had seen but could not remember the sequence. This seemed a bit simplistic and as he did not hit that source of information though his internet search, we did not follow it, instead we followed the conventional instruction to enter the IP address. We tried this way and that – no luck. Hmm… I closed everything down, said thank you and signed off.

In the meantime, my daughter phoned to say her exercise bike was making funny noises, being utterly reliant on it, it breaking down was a no, no. She did buy some WD-40 as she heard that would work but what was she to do with it, she asked, ‘Perhaps you might spray it where the noise is’ I suggested, I wondered why she had not thought of that.

My brother contacted me again ‘I have an idea’ he said, Great! I fired up the computer and followed the instructions: go to the link WPS button on the modem then do the same on the WiFi repeater. Bingo, it worked!! This was a good lock down day!

On reflection, I realised I attempted to outsource this problem twice unsuccessfully and a third successfully. My daughter had tried to outsource her problem to me, why didn’t we both just do it ourselves? A simple explanation might be that we are both a bit lazy and being extraverts, it’s an opportunity to engage someone else in our lives, lives where are other people are almost absent in this lock down period. Yet, by outsourcing we lose something of ourselves, we lose our hutzpah. I look up ‘hutzpah’ and find the synonyms are audacity, courage, and most importantly self-confidence. Self-confidence, yes, we handed over something of ourselves and let go of our own strength in that process.

Should I have flicked the coin and pursued the ‘press the button method’? Had it not worked, I could have retraced the steps and re-established the Wi-Fi, no problem. As I examine this further, various explanations emerge, I realise most importantly, the exponential gain of that action, would have enhanced my sense of self, my confidence and inner strength, something that is crucial in these days of being without protection from the virus other than our own inner defences systems comprised of these atributes. Perhaps I should risk it next time… yet, I would have been deprived of spending a couple of hours (virtually) with my wonderful brother – Hmmm, a conundrum.

Building our inner strength and connecting with those we love are key in to keeping up our defences in this battle against Corvid-19, how are you building up yours?

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I think it is very 'human' to want to connect with others and reaching out for each others help is important in achieving that connection, even from a distance. An example of this in our neighbourhood is Saturday singing (from driveways) and Sunday dancing. We have also been running 'treasure trails' with different themes by putting art in our windows for others to spot during their daily exercises. Before Covid, these people were ultimately strangers but the desire to connect has proven to be a shield against the virus. It is remarkable how we find a way of supporting no matter the challenges we face, hether it be asking for help or finding a common interest.


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