Don’t forget the good things we learned in lockdown

COVID-19 has an had impact on all our lives, but in many different ways.
I heard a quote recently that “we are not in the same boat, more like we are all in the same storm in little boats and are finding our own ways to move forward through the water”.
For me this really resonated as everyone I speak to has very different views of this period in our lives.
There are large groups of people who have worked throughout, keeping us safe, fed and essentials delivered. Many are feeling burned out because they have worked so many hours.There are those who have learned to work from home, furloughed or supporting others i.e. homeschooling. Many have discovered new things in their lives. Some enjoy the new regime, others desperate to get back to their normal.
Throughout lockdow one topic of conversation was the glorious weather. So many people enjoyed being outdoors, walking, noticing nature and wildlife around them.And silence!
On reflection twe may wish to keep the elements in our lives as we start to unlock. Questioning whether these newfound experiences can be incorporated moving forward, will be on many people’s minds.
I have learned a few new techniques during my NLP journey over the years, some that have been great and others not right for me. During lockdown I took time to explore things that could support us, especially in the area of self care and mental health. One area I was curious about was visualising things.
In early 2019 I had listened to a podcast and was trying to set goals for the year as we often do at NewYear.The speaker,Tara Swart (The Source) had suggested creating a visual goal board.
By seeing images related to a wish or a goal each day the subconscious part of the brain focuses on the goal helping you achieve it. So I began to collect images that best described what I wanted to achieve by the end of 2019.
I placed them on a large piece of card and positioned it somewhere I would see every day. I must be honest I was sceptical and although I passed it every day I began to forget it was there. It was only as I began to think about new goals for 2020, I looked at the board and its images.There was a theme and I had made some achievements. Maybe my subconscious had been working without me realising?
It was not exactly as imagined, but definitely heading in the right direction. I set about adding new images for my new board during January 2020 curious on how this was working.Then COVID-19, many of my ideas were to travel more and work in more schools. Both stopped.The board felt redundant.
I heard Tara in another podcast and she had created her new board in January – like me she realised a lot of goals would not happen due to COVID. She suggested a post lockdown board as a way of focussing on what you would like to happen or keep doing when things go back to “normal”. Maybe a place to travel to, favourite places to eat or pictures of the new daily walk. Even a set of images that made you smile or feel good. By having a positive set
of images placed somewhere you can see it every day can be a reminder of things that make you happy.This could be a great creative tool for children and young people too. It could be done digitally printing out and pasting on a card. Letting children think about the next twelve months positively and what they would like to enjoy allows them to focus on their future.
It gives us a little control back in our lives. It also helps to rebalance the brain and reduce our stress.
Other techniques I explored included daily journaling. It may be a set of questions you aim to answer each day. How was my day? What did I achieve? What was good about today?
Or write down anything that comes into your head about your day.The things you enjoyed, any worries or noting how you are feeling.Add to this three things that were good about the day.This can be as short or as lengthy as you wish.
Setting a goal each week on what you want to achieve is a good way of you focusing on moving forward. Keeping the goals simple ensures you are more likely to achieve them, and therefore keeping you in a positive frame.
A good example could be that during lockdown you were enjoying a daily walk or riding a bike.When starting back to work finding time to do this may be harder, however by noting ahead in a journal may allow you to plan and find ways of incorporating it into a daily practice ie cycle to work or find a park to walk to to have your lunch.
Many of us have found new skills in lockdown. Sharing this with others when returning to work or supporting those around you starting back is a good way of continuing these new found skills. If you have found you are a great baker share the produce or recipes with your friends or team.
If you have learned to paint or grow plants maybe create and share as a gift to a valued friend or colleague.This way you are more likely to continue with your new found interest.
As we move forward through the year, there will still be many challenges to overcome.Trying some of the techniques above may help to support mental health.Taking a few minutes each day to rebalance thoughts is helpful. Maybe sit with a tea in a quiet space. Listen to music or a walk in the park.Whatever helps to calm and be kind to ourselves.

2 thoughts on “Don’t forget the good things we learned in lockdown

  1. This is beautifully written Mel… especially aboutTara’s visual board…. much to take from all this.
    The new houses look spectacular.
    Looking forward to ‘Bruce’! J

    1. Hello thank you so much for the feedback. Overwhelmed by response so sorry taken while to get back. Mel x

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