The Ninth Day
Kia Ora Everyone
Its Day 9 of the Lockdown today.
How are you doing?
How are you feeling?
How has the week been for you?
What has it been like staying home in your bubble?
Perhaps many of you are working from home right now. Some of you may be working in essential services. Some of you may be unable to work from home. What have you observed about yourself this last week? What are the emotions that you’re experiencing? You may have run through a variety of emotional reactions across the span of the last 9 days. I have felt some degree of fear and uncertainty over how long this situation will last and what the impact on my business might be, sadness at the ever rising toll the virus is taking on the world, anger at the people who are deliberately flouting lockdown orders, joy in the simple pleasures of walking in the early morning fog, some trepidation in visiting the local New World supermarket.
This pandemic is touching us in a big way, all over the world and it might be easy to give in to some of these negative emotions. It is also OK to acknowledge that you are experiencing these emotions. What is important for our ongoing well-being though is to remember not to let these emotions derail us or send us into a spiral of negativity. Remember that in times of extreme stress, we see our shadow side emerge.
In personality type theory, this is known as our inferior function, the least trusted and least understood part of our personality, where our fears, doubts and uncertainties may become unrealistically magnified. How do we prevent the shadow from holding sway over us? We look for the things that bring us joy. You may be surprised (or not) to realise that these are often the simplest things: a walk in nature, playing with your pet, a conversation with a loved one, or simply sitting still and enjoying being in the moment. If you would like more information on what your stress triggers might be and how you can bring yourself back to wellness, check out my E-book: Getting a Grip on Stress.
I’ve found that affording empathy to the people in and outside of your bubble can be a first step in reducing the force of the inferior. Remember that many, many others are in that same boat of uncertainty and doubt. Realising that we really are, for the first time in history, ALL, in this together might bring a sense of understanding to our global community. If you’d like to know exactly what empathy looks like and how to build it, check out this video:
You can also watch Brene Brown's video on the difference between Empathy and Sympathy here: https://youtu.be/1Evwgu369Jw
While having empathy for others is a great first step in building powerful interpersonal relationships, we should remember as well to look after ourselves. Self-care is incredibly important in helping us get through this crisis. I want to share some of the things that I’ve been doing over the last nine days:
Woken up at 7 each morning
Worked out on the cross trainer, done yoga and strengthening exercises
Spent 10 minutes each day in meditation
Walked Sacha, my dog together with Monica
Had a sit down breakfast, lunch and dinner with Monica each day
Had coaching conversations with a number of people who took me up on my offer of free coaching
Worked on Module 5 of my online EQ Programme
Did my first Type Coach debrief
Practiced gratitude every day
Caught up on episodes of Star Trek!
We have tried to make each day as normal as possible, keeping a decent routine going.
We don’t know what the next three weeks of lockdown will be like but if we stick to our bubbles, practice gratitude and empathy every day and find something to do that engages us, I have no doubt we will come through this a lot stronger!
Kia Kaha Stay Strong, Stay Safe, Be Kind
PS: My offer on an hour’s free coaching is still open to anyone who is transitioning to a new way of working or who is stressed and anxious about the current situation and needs an ear. Just book a time using the following link: https://calendly.com/lifetrails/free-coaching-hour