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Leveraging lockdown Part 1

Updated: Apr 14, 2020

Read this if:

  • You want to find out why we have all gone a bit crazy with lockdown

  • Why lockdown feels so strange

  • To get an idea of a solution to steady all the weirdness that’s going on

This unprecedented time of lockdown – where all around the globe we are being asked to stay inside and isolate ourselves from society – is the perfect time to create a kind of personal stability that will change our lives forever.

We have essentially been forced to cease doing the things we most love to do; the things that give our lives meaning. Almost overnight we seem to have had those things that were our choices and freedoms taken away, leaving us feeling trapped, lost and disorientated.

This storm WILL pass, but it is abundantly clear that going back to ‘normal’ isn’t really going to be an option and whatever comes after the Covid19 crisis passes will test us significantly and repeatedly.

Why are we feeling so trapped, lost and disorientated?

We are feeling this way because some of our fundamental human need structures have altered so significantly with Covid19 and isolation that, as a society, we have been left in a place of massive uncertainty – this we do not like.

I have been learning, working with, paying attention to and applying the theories of a mashup of some of the greatest philosophers, leaders and thinkers the world has known, along with my own, for over 20 years working with humans. What I know for sure is that currently we are facing some external events that are in direct opposition to everything I have learned and know to be true about what makes people feel ok.

We feel lost and disorientated because humans need regular rules for us to be able to make sense of the world and not freak out. We need to have frameworks of right, wrong, good, bad, fun and not fun that we can create for ourselves and construct our lives around. We need to have familiar building blocks to construct our day-to-day existence with, which we can control.

We are feeling trapped because, obviously, our physical worlds have suddenly become much smaller, but there are some other significant things at play too. Without our essential frameworks and constructs we find it really hard to make decisions, our freedom to think is effected. We also really struggle when the things we hold in great esteem become unavailable to us.

Simply put we can literally lose the plot if we don’t have stability, routine and freedom. There are of course other factors but at the moment these are the major ones at play.

What does stability, routine and freedom look like?

We love external certainties when it comes to stability; for you it may be the rhythm and routine of going to work, or perhaps it’s the gym. For some it is regular socialising, it could be dancing, the school run or church. For others it could be their connections and relationships. Most importantly we love the freedom to do these things as and when it suits our needs.

So what’s actually important here? How can we find stability and freedom against all the odds? How can we find joy in what might seem like the bleakest of times? How can we manage when our external certainties are fundamentally disrupted?

Well, there is a strategy that can help us when everything externally is shifting and changing. In fact it is pretty much one of our only constants and it is SELF. Yourself. YOU.

No matter what happens around you externally, you will always take YOU with you and getting OK with yourself is far and away the best way to steady yourself when in any storm.

So, it stands to reason then that we would make ourselves the strongest anchors possible to help steady our life ship, right?

I will cover the ‘how’ in my next blog post. Sign up to my mailing list to make sure you don't miss out.

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