During these challenging times, people often ask me how they can be more resilient- to start our discussion, I share the metaphor in this 1 min video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p9t0M6cYm_k. Then I ask them to consider the ways they have been active in their own lives, in guiding the direction it takes when it comes to the following areas over the past month?
- Emotionally What have you been doing to promote your own emotional well-being?
Ie. Meditating, exercising, practicing gratitude, connecting with others, using healthy coping strategies like engaging in enjoyable activities, journaling, using an attention diet, writing out 3 things that are in your control daily.
- Physically What have you been doing to care for your physical health?
Ie. Making sure you are eating and sleeping well, taking care of your body, giving yourself time to rest and recover, creating calm spaces and surrounding yourself with people who bring you calm and a sense of safety and pleasure, speaking and treating yourself as you would your closest and most dear friend.
- Socially How have you been caring for your social relationships?
Ie. Setting healthy boundaries and enforcing them, respecting other people’s boundaries, reflecting on which relationships make you feel stronger or weaker, if they are generally reciprocal in nature or if you tend to be the giver/ taker. Allowing yourself to be seen and comforted by others by sharing struggles and vulnerabilities, receiving comfort from others without feeling guilt, weakness or like a burden.
- Professionally How active have you been in guiding the direction of your professional life?
Ie. Taking time to reflect on what you enjoy or not, asking for what you want/ need, being clear about the suitability of your workload, working collaboratively with others to trouble-shoot difficulties and render your day more efficient?
Empowered by the knowledge from the above questions, remembering to take your responses as feedback rather than as evaluation. It is all just information. All change starts with awareness.
What is one step you could take towards assuming a more active role in your own life? In order to help yourself with effective goal-setting, consider using the SMART goal approach.
S- Specific (ie. I will eat one serving of vegetables/ d vs I will eat healthier)
M- Meaningful (important to you) and measurable (anyone could objectively agree it was done or not)
A- Actionable by you, making sure you alone are in control of the outcome (ie. I will invite John for dinner, vs have John over for diner)
R- Realistic, make sure you are 90% sure you can meet your goal, otherwise break it down into smaller steps
T- Time oriented, have a deadline. When starting it is best to set smaller and more frequent SMART goals with more frequent deadlines, ideally within a week or so.
If you are looking for additional ways to be resilient through the COVID-19 Pandemic, watch the video below.