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Managing pressure at work: UK celebrates the Queen's Jubilee

Family, friends and community are the basic markers of our life

Gulf News

This week, in London, millions celebrated the diamond jubilee that represents the 60 years that Queen Elizabeth has been on the throne.  People came from all over the world to share with us the unique pageantry that is part of our English heritage.

To those of us born in Britain, it is something more than celebrating the reign of a remarkable woman who has, in all those years, never put a foot wrong.  It is the matching of our lives to hers, as the passing of the years remind us of the passing of our own years.

The photographs of a young Prince Charles on his first day in school bring back vivid memories of my own children, crying when I left them with their new teachers on their first day in school.

There is a linkage of our lives as ordinary citizens to that of the queen, for as she has grown older, year by year, so do we.   It is about the narrative of our family over the years in a Britain with the good fortune to have a Royal family that is admired and respected throughout the world.

This Diamond Jubilee is a marking of six decades of service to the nation, sixty years in which many prime Ministers and presidents have come and gone; there have been two world wars in which Britain has played a major role and also through the years of the ‘cold war'.

Now, in 2012, we are in a different place.  In a technological age in which computers rule our lives, we sometimes forget the more important aspects of life that are unrelated to technology. 
 
Basic Markers

Family, friends, community, religion, loyalty and integrity are independent of technology.  They are the basic markers of our life and our relationships should be strong enough to withstand the winds of misfortune that will, on occasion, affect all of us at some time.  Sickness and ill-health are felt by everyone – in fact the Queen's own father, King George VI died before he was 60 years old.
  
So this week, the country came together as one.  Over a million people descended on London to watch the royal barge carrying the royal household down the River Thames.  This was indeed a quintessential British occasion, with the weather to match, but the rain could not dampen spirits as the river hosted its biggest gala in 300 years. 

The skies were grey and the crowds on the river banks and bridges certainly needed their umbrellas but nothing could dampen the enthusiasm and flag waving from children through to pensioners who had got up early in the morning to ensure their place to watch the seven mile procession of boats that included tugs, cruisers, motor boats and the like. 

Nothing could symbolise the 86-year-old Queen's resilience and dedication to her duty more than to see her waving to the crowds from the open-topped boat ‘the Spirit of Chartwell' where she stood for the entire trip together with her 90 year old husband, Prince Phillip.  Whether you are a Royalist or not, you could not help but admire her fortitude as the wind blew and the rain fell.

The celebrations continued with street parties where communities came together who rarely see each other.  More than 4,000 beacons were lit and people joined together in a bank holiday weekend which was very special to us all.

The next day an incredible sight took place as more than a quarter of a million people packed the Mall and surrounding parks leading up to Buckingham Palace which was awash with colour during the evening, to listen to a star studded Diamond Jubilee concert culminating in the Queen lighting the last national beacon and then an unforgettable firework display of red, white and blue with the Land of Hope and Glory playing in the background.  It brought tears to my eyes and was an unforgettable evening.

This week, of the Queen's Jubilee, as we look back at life and forward to eternity, it becomes clear to us what, and who is important and what, and who, is not and as a loyal British subject, I am certainly very proud to be British.

The author is a BBC Guest-Broadcaster and Motivational Speaker. She is CEO of an international Stress Management consultancy and her new book, ‘Show Stress Who’s Boss!’ is available in all good bookshops.

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