COVID has disrupted our lives and will continue to do so for many years to varying degrees. At “worst” it has been, and continues to be, destructive. At “best” it has forced many to do what they have been procrastinating on for years – innovating, growing and acting.
As with countless events humankind has wrestled with, worked through and ultimately overcome, we will do the same this time.
The bigger question to consider is how each of us is responding to the pandemic. Are we simply reacting or are we being proactive in finding a way through and a work-around?
I propose two fundamental views and the accompanying behaviors each of us needs to consider as we maneuver our way through the pandemic. The mindset we select will ultimately determine our own success, affect our mental health and dictate how others view and engage with us.
This option entails adopting a survivor or overcomer mindset. It requires a realistic assessment of the situation to evaluate risk factors, determine options and identify action plans we must initiate. The fundamental mindset needed is one of realistic optimism and being an agent or force for change to improve the situation or minimize damage.
Option two results in a victim mindset where the blame for everything is placed on the virus, government and “them” (whoever they are). This mentality can create a “it’s not my fault, I didn’t want this” attitude and “I’m going to lay low or disengage until it’s all over” mindset. As long as I can blame something or someone for my situation, it takes the pressure off me and eliminates the need for me to do anything.
Beyond our COVID response, these two positions constantly are at play in our life whether we are aware of them or not. COVID has exacerbated this. It is also forcing some of us to confront what we have stuffed into the back of the closet hoping we could ignore it and not have to deal with it again.
As someone once said – “It would be a shame to waste a crisis”. I maintain that success and achievement often teaches us less than failure and challenges do. We are all going through the crisis however each of us has to decide how we will respond. Our response may not be pretty or particularly elegant, however it must be growth, improvement or survival focused.
Challenge is a given but change and growth is optional. Which one are you selecting?