13 Jul Start From Here
How do you feel about 2020?
Have you found yourself somewhat bemused by the fact that it’s mid-July; you’re not quite sure how you got here and even less sure what to do now or where to start? Or do you feel like you just want to hide under a blanket and wait for 2021?
Over the last few weeks, schools, shops and businesses have started to re-open. Social gatherings are getting more social and sport and the arts are starting to come out of hibernation. Whilst the situation is still far from what we once considered normal, there is a sense of looking to the future, rather than having to be as constantly reactive as we have been over the last few months.
Everyone has experienced the pandemic in different ways and the same will continue to be true of its effects over the coming months and years. This has not been the year that anyone wanted or predicted personally or professionally; dreams have been left in tatters, business plans have been rendered irrelevant and goals have been cast aside. Socially, economically and globally, we are in a very different place to where we started the year.
The pandemic has made us pause and reflect; it’s brought the important things in our individual and collective lives to the front and centre of our attention. Now is the time to identify what those things are for you and what you want to do about them. Rather than thinking about getting “back to normal”, think instead about moving forwards purposefully to something better.
Moving forwards does not mean ignoring the things that you couldn’t do or won’t be able to do in the future- they were important for a reason and it’s absolutely right to feel disappointed, frustrated or whatever you feel. It’s also not about ignoring the pain that coronavirus has brought to us personally and collectively. Instead it’s about ensuring that the pain and loss doesn’t rule the present or dictate the future. When we focus solely on what we don’t have, we ruminate, procrastinate and worry. We stay stuck in a negative cycle which leaves us looking inwards, feeling unfilled and frustrated with ourselves and the world at large.
Whatever and however the pandemic has been for you, this hasn’t been the year you hoped for, but it can still be a year worth remembering - the question is, what do you want to remember it for?
Resilience is about moving forwards through challenge and adversity towards the things we value. It’s a process and a mindset that requires us to recover and to learn from that adversity and above all, to take the next step forwards. And the next. And that one after that.
Wherever you are now, however you feel, draw a line in the metaphorical sand and start from here. Take your insight from the last few months with you. Move forwards with purpose – big steps, small steps, whatever feels comfortable for you right now.
Think about what’s important to you, personally and professionally.
- What are the outcomes that you want to achieve?
- What steps can you take towards those outcomes?
- What can you do to get started?
Life will happen – things beyond our control will mean that we don’t achieve our goals or that we have to tear our plans up and make new ones, sometimes frustratingly soon after we’ve made the plan. Sometimes we get in our own way; we don’t live up to our values or we lose sight of our outcomes. Each time, sometimes several times a day, we get to draw a line in the sand – learn the lessons, recover and move on.
Whilst the calendar serves as an arbitrary passing of time, resilience keeps us focused on our values and moving towards our outcomes; we can honour our past and learn from it, but we go forwards from here.
Start from where you are. Start now.
Stay safe, keep well, be kind
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