Have you ever felt that your world was falling apart? That your familiar life was being ripped away and you were left not knowing what to do next?
I have. And I imagine you have too.
The news is filled with stories of people losing loved ones, homes and livelihood to fire, flood, earthquakes, mass shootings, war…pick your disaster.
Disruption is everywhere. It’s part of life. It can feel overwhelming, especially when it’s happening to you. A major effect of disruption is the feeling of loss of control. The landscape changes. Familiar landmarks disappear. Relationships are altered. We lose our bearings.
In the event of an emergency, put on your own oxygen mask before helping others.
Simple advice, but not always easy to do.
While it may seem selfish or unnatural to take care of ourselves when others are suffering, we can do more when we are centered and resourceful. Here are a few simple steps to help stabilize you and activate resiliency during stressful times.
1. Breathe – deeply and regularly. Oxygen to the brain and regular rhythms send messages to your body and brain that you are calm and in control.
2. Release and relax – recognize that you can be more resourceful when you are flowing with the situation, not resisting it.
3. Focus – give your mind a place to land where it can do its best work in creating a positive outcome. The following strategic questions engage the mind in constructive, creative thinking. Write down the answers and don’t let the negative thoughts insert themselves or take over. Staying focused on next actions is a discipline that yields better results.
- What do I need? – Rest? Food? Shelter? Physical activity? Assurance? What can you provide yourself right now that gives you relief? What can you ask of others?
- What do I want…instead of what is happening? Sometimes we can only focus on what’s not working. When looking at what we don’t want and asking, “What do I want instead?” will often reveal important information such as, “to feel safe,” “to have support,” “to feel competent,” “to be resourceful.” Our brains are natural problem-solvers. Give yours something constructive to focus on.
- What is the next action? Just one next action that will move you in the right direction. It doesn’t have to be a whole plan. You don’t have to know how the situation will turn out. Just determine what the next step is…and take it. Maybe it’s to take a walk and clear your head. Maybe it’s to call a friend or coach for assurance and guidance. Maybe it’s to make a list of all the things that are swirling around in your head just to get them out so you can triage and plan. Get momentum started now.
First and foremost…take care of your precious self. YOU are a gift. You deserve to live your best life. Shine on!
Stuck about what to do next? Contact us for your free Discovery Session. It’s our gift to you.