Jackie and Rachael (coaches at Inspiration Activated) are like you, in the COVID-19 situation together with you and your family. Everyone is adapting to new situations, challenges and circumstances. What is important is that as we adapt, we choose effective ways of doing so. As individuals you have the capacity to choose how you respond to circumstances and change and lead yourself in a way that empowers you rather than disables you. This blog has ideas, tips and inspiration for you and those around you to support you to step up to live life to the max by being incredibly courageous, having faith and showing love to each other. Use it, share it with your friends and family and get in touch for further support.
Remember we are in this together and Jackie and I are here together for you.
Rachael & Jackie.
The Release yourself from the lockdown:
As we start to return to an adjusted reality of normal and you may find yourself hearing stories of what other people have completed, done or enjoyed during the lockdown weeks. Some are recognising their waistlines have changed for the worse and others are wishing perhaps they could stay at home longer. Sometimes this can start a cycle of guilt and regret. One method of changing this is finding a piece of paper and writing down the truth of what you did or didn’t do during the lockdown and why.
Here is an excerpt of Rachael’s – you can notice that I seemed to get into a flow of saying the complete opposite. It may not be the same for you and yet the truth actually sets you free. The truth allows you to see all aspects of your experience, it allows you to recognise yourself, forgive yourself and move forwards. Sometimes we get ourselves in pickles because we forget the truth. Writing the truth down gives you time to consider what actually happened. Then at the end of it you could choose to consider what you have learnt about yourself during this time and how that can help you to be more effective or happier in some way in the future. The interesting conclusion I came to was that the range of actions or lack of action, many emotions and many thought processes that I went through were similar to other blocks of time in my life. So perhaps you'll give yourself a break, even a pat on the back after you come to your own truth by writing down or saying outloud your experience.
Rachael's release diary:
Sometimes when faced with our own changes, we can forget that others in our sphere of influence are also facing challenges and need our support right now. Remember to reach out and show support and compassion to others. As the WHO director said "compassion is medicine". Make sure you GIVE your prescribed dose of compassion to yourself, your loved ones and to strangers you come across each and everyday!
Does “grateful” work for you?
Have you heard the concept of being grateful? Of writing a gratitude diary? Have you given it a go? Have you stopped because it doesn't feel right?
The simple background to the gratitude concept is - if you produce more positive thanks for your life as it is now you create a mental approach to life that can give you greater happiness, joy and fulfillment as well as support you in times of challenge and stress because you will have something in your life you can be thankful for. A powerful concept.
However, I often find myself not engaging with the word grateful or sometimes I dislike the word thankful. I go around my mind trying to put words to how I feel about the fact that I my car works, I have a phone to call my family or that its a sunny day. The trick i've found is NOT to use the same word everytime - to really SEARCH, to really be authentic when you are saying thanks for something in your life. Here are some ideas:
I am ecstatic that....
It is delightful that...
Thank you universe for....
Go ahead and create your own, the key is that whatever you are writing, saying or thinking it actually MEANS something to you.
'What does your future look like?
Looking into the distance is like looking into your future. The COVID-19 situation has led to a large amount of uncertainty, new adaptations, new realities – ultimately a lot of changes in how you picture your future. However we must remember that life's changes happened before COVID and will continue to happen afterwards, change is inevitable. However, it times of sudden or dramatic change it can feel scary considering what the future has in store for you, your family, the country and the world. Here is a chance for you to consider your reaction to the unknown and optimise your reaction to serve you rather than hinder you. If you look optimistically towards your future you’ll be in the position to take actions towards this bright future. However if you get caught up in the news and the changes in our lives you are more likely to miss the opportunities that could lead you forwards in life. The future is unknown and if you think about it, it always has been. We always take steps towards an unknown future its just your choice whether you are dragging those steps or you step with precision and decisiveness!
This unknown can be linked to emotions of fear and being scared. However, if we didn’t have an unknown then life would be incredibly BORING. We wouldn’t do anything differently, nothing different would happen, and we wouldn’t change, learn or grow. The unknown gives life its excitement, its freshness, its spontaneity! That being said, we each need to feel that we have some control and certainty in our lives. In this time of real change, we need to realise what is certain in our life – perhaps it is your connections with family and friends, perhaps it’s the sun that rises and sets each day, perhaps it’s a belief in your God or universe to help you maintain a sense of security. I would suggest you locate each day a few things you can be certain of during this period of change as it will support you in adapting effectively and courageously.
Another aspect of cultivating certainty can also be considered ‘faith’ – trusting in the future and by doing so you imagine a hopeful future at some point. The concept of fear is similar because we fear when we imagine a future and yet instead of imagining a hopeful future (faith), it’s a scary or worrying future. So it seems we have a choice – faith vs. fear.
Having faith includes putting into your imagined future the concept that someday in the near future, you will discover a gift, a 'lightbulb' moment, a learning opportunity to come from this circumstance. At times the stories we follow in the short term are stories of problem, depression, challenge and failure. If we hold onto this part of the story we miss the ultimate teaching moment. We miss the learning, the growth and the backbone building. We need to remember that challenges can be a gift. By living through a challenge we often learn to be empathetic to others because we can see ourselves in another person’s situation and have more drive to support and help others during their time of need. This can bring us all together and as a collective force we can gather our resources and remember that right now is not the end of our story, it is part of it and we have the power to set up the next chapter by cultivating faith.
Now, it is important to know if you focus on a hopeful future filled with faith it doesn’t necessarily mean you will get it, but at least you will be living in an emotional state which empowers you to take effective action steps towards your future. A potential future in which you feel awesome about as opposed to a future you are scared or fearful about where you have so many uncertain scenarios that scare and worry you that it limits your options in life. I know which process I’d prefer to be running in my brain – how about you? Would now be the right time to have faith in your future?
Inspiration to picture a bright future: