The Big Picture: Shanaka Winters

Nov 13, 2020 | Celebrating the Years, Living

Shanaka Winters, project engineer at Louisville Water Company, says, “Being a mother, wife, and working full-time makes for a busy schedule, and I was always thinking about the next thing on my list to accomplish. Then, the pandemic hit, limiting the places I could go and things I could do. Instead I slowed down, spent more time at home with my family, and had the opportunity to watch my toddler explore and absorb all that it means to be human. I cannot manufacture more time to accomplish all that I need to do, but I can make the most of the time that I have with loved ones.”

Shanaka Winters
Project Engineer, Louisville Water Company
Married to Michael Winters, mother to Noah, 2 and stepmother to Owen, 11 

What really matters to you? Being present in the moment. 

Why does this matter, and has what matters to you changed in recent months? If so, why? Being a mother, wife, and working full-time makes for a busy schedule, and I was always thinking about the next thing on my list to accomplish. Then, the pandemic hit, limiting the places I could go and things I could do. I slowed down, spent more time at home with my family, and had the opportunity to watch my toddler explore and absorb all that it means to be human. I cannot manufacture more time to accomplish all that I need to do, but I can make the most of the time that I have with loved ones. 

What has surprised you (as it relates either to yourself or to others)? I’m surprised how much I miss going to the office. I enjoy the flexibility of working from home, but I didn’t realize how much I thrive on the collaboration with my co-workers. 

How do you incorporate gratitude into your life? I like to send a handwritten note to individuals letting them know how I am thankful for them and the impact they have had on me. If I have not already sent a letter during the year, then the holiday season is usually an ideal time. I will include a note or message in the holiday greeting card. 

How do you keep yourself calm in the midst of chaos? I remind myself that as much I think I have everything in control, I am not the one holding all things together, so I turn to God in prayer. 

What brings you the greatest joy? Watching my son play and learn more about this fascinating world we live in. 

How do you bring joy to others? When I have time, I love to cook and open our home to friends and family. 

What are you looking forward to? Well, after 2020, I am looking forward to 2021. Surely, things can only go up from here. 

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