The world is definitely in chaos right now. It’s pretty apparent that no one truly knows how to steer this ship into safe harbor. It is easy to get caught up in the fear, the politics, or the social media craziness. Yet, none of this focus truly brings about change. We are not in charge of this virus, the world’s response, or the duration of quarantine. We are however, in charge of how we think about and respond to uncertainty and fear.
How are you hardwired? Are you a glass half empty or glass half full thinker? There is research that shows that human beings are born with a certain hardwiring or mindset with which all information is funneled through. We then respond according to our lens. Yet, there is also research that demonstrates the importance of conscious mindset focus. This means that I can choose to “reframe” thoughts into either a neutral or even positive direction.
Take a fear. Name it. Allow yourself to feel however you feel when you focus on the negative thought. This is called TOLERATING. I tell myself, “yes, this sucks. I am afraid of (fill in the blank). I hate this feeling. AND it is TEMPORARY. I don’t know how long it will last, but I do know I won’t always feel the way I do RIGHT NOW. I am now freer to focus on a neutral or more positive possibility related to my fear. So with Covid-19:
Fear: Me or my family is going to get this virus. We are going to get sick.
Tolerate: this is really scary and I do not like feeling this way or thinking about this.
I know that as scary as this time is right now, there is a time somewhere in the future, that won’t feel like this. There is a time when I won’t be this scared.
Neutral focus: Me or my family may or may not get this virus. If we get this virus it may be very mild.
Positive focus: It is unlikely that we will get this virus. We are going to be healthy.
Our brains are powerful. We can harness inner power even when we can’t change our circumstances. We have the ability to focus on negative, or instead decide to focus on the neutral or positive- but it takes repetition and conscious effort. Overtime, we can move more towards midline in our lens hardwiring. We can adopt a new mantra. “This is temporary and this will work out over time. Even if the worst case happens, things will stabilize in some way. No matter what happens on this earth, I won’t always feel like I do right now. “
Lastly, it is important to close the gap on our fear timeline. We need to focus on the short term until the long term is more in sight. So set a daily focus, or if things get too heavy, and hour by hour focus. Today I choose to focus on…..
Let’s focus on our core strength. It is a muscle. It has to be exercised and empowered.