Become A Victor – Rather Than A Victim – of this 2020 Pandemonium
Nov 26, 2020
By Dr. Marcus Mottley
This 2020 pandemic has caused a world-wide pandemonium. Everyone is dealing with high levels of stress and uncertainty. You are not alone and it is not your fault. 2020 has been a wild ride for everyone on the planet. No one could have predicted this level of chaos, fear, worry and pain when this year started. Everywhere – in every corner of the globe, the coronavirus has changed life as we know it. In a few ‘short’ weeks, our sense of normalcy became unrecognizable in just about every way.
Public health policies, including physical distancing, social changes, rules, regulations, and quarantines have caused a feeling of fear for many. Masks, hand sanitizers, travel restrictions, mass hospitalizations, mass deaths, millions left grieving loved ones… and so much more. There has been a lot of negativity for people everywhere to deal with.
There is economic insecurity, changes to daily routines as well as changes to the fabric of normal life in the World in many ways. Supplies are in short supply, food staples have been depleted, paychecks have disappeared… people are suffering. And, the uncertainty continues – and will continue way into 2021.
If you are like most people on the planet, you could do with somewhere from a little to a lot of help. Here are some suggestions to protect your sanity and stay well during (and maybe beyond) the pandemic.
In general, people thrive off of certainty, normalcy, and a sense of safety. We want to feel safe and have a sense of control over our lives and well-being. With current restrictions, and rule changes from week to week, and uncertainty, there are steps you can take to make the journey of 2020 a little bit easier.
However, uncertainty is an unavoidable part of life. As this year attests, life can change in an instant. That can be a little hard to get your head around. One thing that can help is developing and grounding yourself into a routine. A routine or ‘regular practice’ gives you balance, consistency and reliability, which help calm your mind in times of worry, trouble, change – and yes - uncertainty.
Create a routine and stick with it!
Self-Care Tips To Fight Fear Uncertainty The Pandemic
- Use positive self-talk. Don’t beat yourself up if you struggle with uncertainties in life during this crazy year (and the next one 2021). Everyone has their own level of resiliency. Acknowledge your own efforts and use positive self-talk.
- Control what you can control. Focus on the things that you can actually control, even if it’s as simple as a daily routine, fitness planning or pre organizing meals for the week.
- Develop a ‘ritual’. Many of us have rituals. For example, my 106 years old mother has a ritual where the first thing that she does on awakening each day is to silently pray for about 15 minutes. And then, when anything happens in her life – she instantly has a prayer for the occasion. Now – prayer may not be your ‘thing’ – but you should have some ‘thing’ that you do that is your ‘ritual’. You may also want to develop or reaffirm family rituals (such as prayer before meals) or weekend discussions around the table, etc.
- Don’t binge-watch bad news. You know that it is easy to spend hours watching negative news. Limit this. Watch positive news and also just cut it off at some point. Catastrophic sensational news is not a mood lifter. If you continue to watch negative news… you will also continue to be buried in negativity. However, I am not suggesting that you divorce yourself from reality. What I am saying is that you must strike a balance of negative news and positive news – and that these can be equally real. Of course, the struggle may be while it is easy to find tons of ‘bad’ news, it can be quite difficult to find uplifting and positive news on TV. You may have to search online each day for the ‘feel good’ story of the day!
- Be your own biggest supporter. If you were talking to a close friend, how would you show support if they are stressed about uncertainty? What would you tell them, and how would you encourage them? Turn this set of good vibes onto yourself.
- Seek support from your network. Share your experience and struggles with trusted sources. Venting is one of the best ways to process feelings. This can be with friends, supportive family, or even online groups. Remember, however, that while venting is equal to ‘letting it out’… it is not the same as ‘letting it go’! So, when seeking support from others, share and discuss highs, lows, successes, failures and doubts. These are great ways to modify how you respond to things around you and change your perspectives and feelings about issues you have to deal with during uncertain times.
- Expand your skillset. Sometimes uncertainty pushes us to make positive changes. Step out of your current skillset and your niche and add others. When times are difficult expanding your knowledge and skill sets can help you thrive. You will be more marketable and feel more in control of your life. In 9 months, millions (maybe billions) of people are now much better with online communication methods than they were in March of 2020!
- Develop two career paths into the future. Individuals who have multiple career paths have had an easier time with this pandemic. When their full-time jobs were spirited away… they leaned into their part time hobbies… and some of these hobbies became their full-time gigs! So… from now on, think about how you may have a primary career path and a secondary one that could easily be developed into full time employment. HINT: They cannot be in the same fields… (Duh!)
- Talk to a pro. If you’re having trouble managing stress and dealing with uncertainty, talk to a pro. This can be a therapist, social worker, a coach.
So… get busy! You are the captain of your life. Implement new habits and new strategies to fortify yourself in these – and future – times of uncertainty. This pandemic has made life hard for 95% of the people on Earth. So, you are not alone. And – it is not your fault!
Staying healthy, optimistic, and taking care of yourself are keys to being a resilient person. And most importantly, take control now!
Implementing some of the above ideas will help you develop techniques to combat stress, worry, indecisiveness, and the day-to-day challenge that you face in the current uncertainty of the pandemic.
Commit to becoming a victor – rather than a victim – of the pandemonium caused by this pandemic.
Need a Coach who is also a Psychologist, and who understands your situation and who can help you like I have helped others? Contact me Dr. Marcus Mottley at: www.MarcusMottley.com