Staying Sane and Positive During COVID-19 Crisis and Beyond
How unshakeable is your positive attitude? Has it taken some hits recently? Let’s do an exercise that will check your ability for staying sane and positive under crisis…
Use your imagination to deeply experience the emotions of the following situation. How would you respond?
After working 50+ years to build up a multi-million-dollar business that includes a huge complex of buildings, what would you do if one day it all burned down…and you have no copies of your work anywhere?
Are you picturing it? In the moment of seeing the flames eat up your life’s work, how do you feel?
As I imagined it, I’ve got to admit I felt despair and wondered if I would give up. Didn’t you? Wouldn’t everyone?
This really happened to Thomas Edison. And in the moment of seemingly utter ruin, he told his son, “Go get your mother and all her friends. They will never see a fire like this again…It’s all right. We’ve just got rid of a lot of rubbish.” He calmly gathered his work force and got back to work. Within a year, he was earning millions again. In fact, after observing how the firefighters worked, he came up with some new inventions.
What an outstanding example for us today! Instead of wasting precious energy on self-pity, he immediately saw a positive — which means that was his habitual way of viewing life — and he found new opportunities.
Because of COVID-19, we’re concerned with protecting our physical health. But staying sane and positive is just as important! Stress and fear make us vulnerable to illnesses. Therefore, it’s vital to practice self-care more than ever, during a crisis. Here are some tips, followed by some searching questions…
- Listening sparingly to only trusted sources of information will help keep you sane. Simply observe what’s happening and how it’s affecting you and your community. No blame. No denial. Just acknowledge it. I appreciate the warning Brené Brown gives, “It’s in our biology to trust what we see with our eyes. This makes living in a carefully edited, overproduced and photo-shopped world very dangerous.”
- Do I have reason to trust this source and do I really need to know this?
- Do I contribute to others’ peace of mind by sharing necessary and upbuilding information instead of sensationalized “news” and panic?
- Mindfully listen to your body wisdom, and recognize how you feel, without judgment. It is what it is. And that’s okay. But don’t get stuck there. Tune into your body sensations, because it will reveal what’s really bothering you. Then you can move on to the next stage of preserving your sanity…managing your emotions.
- Where do I feel tight, heavy, or burdened; and what can I do physically and mentally to upshift these feelings?
- How can I lift another person’s burden and show more respect for their feelings?
- Manage your emotions. Assess how your present emotional state fits in with your desired, intentional way of being, and work at patiently uplifting yourself.
- How can I better align my present emotional state with my intention to be ____(more peaceful, resilient, encouraging)?
- Am I ensuring my emotional state is helping others to cope and have hope?
- Stay centered and grounded. Do what makes you feel still and aware, so you calmly stay in the moment and in control. Avoid drama!
- In what ways do I feel off balance and what will bring me back to center?
- Am I helping others be the best version of themselves, or am I throwing them off balance with sarcasm, rudeness, unkindness, and jealousy?
- Feed your positive energy daily. Do something that gets you out of yourself. This might be taking walks in nature, exercising, eating healthful food, consuming inspiring podcasts and books.
- Continue to build and engage with your supportive community. Interaction with others is an important part of staying sane. Yet relationships need to be nourished to flourish. Work to stay connected despite social distancing mandates.
- What do I need from others to feel supported?
- How am I supporting others right now?
- Step up as a leader. It’s easy to fall into a victim mentality. However, when you take responsibility, you can always find a work around. Rather than viewing this pandemic as a reason for becoming lax or lazy, add more structure and accountability to your live.
- How can I generate more emotional and mental strength in this situation?
- How can I inspire confidence, optimism and hope in others today?
By following these suggestions you can create a ripple effect of positive energy, optimism and hope. My colleague, Louise Santiago, and I are building a global community of empowering woman who are effecting real change in ourselves, our communities and throughout the world. We invite you to join us at the Great Circle Community. Together we’re discovering new ways of staying sane, positive and happy.