The last few months have been a challenging and disruptive time all around the world. The difficulties that we have faced collectively have also been matched with unique personal challenges. And, as we now move into life after lockdown, it's natural to want to reflect on these experiences, and to make positive changes.
One of the most amazing things about the human experience is how adaptable we all are when it comes to change. We can work to find the strength and the courage to move through so many different struggles, and we can come out so much stronger on the other side.
The global pandemic has shown us that there are things about our current way of life that must change — and it has also shown us that there are things about our own lives that can change if we want them to!
You will likely have spent time over the last few months reflecting on your own experience of the lockdown, and also looking back to your life before this time.
In some instances this may have been a painful and uncomfortable experience. It may have forced you to assess your mistakes and regrets, and this can of course be something we prefer to avoid. However, this time may also have allowed you to look back on the things that you have fond memories of, and may have reignited your passion and interest in these things.
If these last few months have driven you to want to make positive changes in your life, then it is important to hold onto those thoughts as the world eases out of lockdown. You may soon feel as though you are back to business as usual, and that could cause you to disregard the insights and conclusions that you reached during this time.
Today I want to share four ways that you can keep a hold of this momentum to work towards positive change over the next few weeks, months, and even years!
If you have already reached solid ideas about how you want your life to be different now, then try to regularly visualise what these changes will look like.
Perhaps you have decided that you need a fresh start somewhere new, or even just a break somewhere to really take some time to yourself. You may have decided that certain relationships or connections aren't truly nourishing you, and that you need to step away from one or more people.
Whatever it is that your positive change looks like, try to hold these thoughts in your mind, and to imagine what your life will look like once you have made these changes.
Visualise how you will spend your days once these changes are in motion, and try to imagine how you will feel when things are different.
2.Talk It Out
Although your experience of the lockdown will of course be different to that of those around you, it is still something we have all experienced together. This means that it's much easier for us to empathise with each other about any relevant difficult feelings, and that we can really support our loved ones.
Being open to sharing your thoughts and feelings with your support network is a great way to make sense of any changes you now wish to make. You will likely find that these people are excited for the realisations that you have reached, and will help to shape your journey moving forwards.
When having these conversations, it's important to be authentic in your feelings, and to share openly and honestly. There's no shame in admitting that you had a hard time if that's the case, and the person you are opening up to will surely be able to understand the origin of these emotions.
3.Write It Down
If you have been keeping a journal over the last few months, then this will be an invaluable tool to instigating positive changes in your life now. Find opportunities to look back over your thoughts and to make sense of them with the clarity that you have now gained.
If you didn't keep a written record of your experience, then taking some time to write about it now can still be incredibly helpful. Use this as an exercise for getting all of your feelings out — the joy, the pain, and the difficulties — and try to focus on the good that can now come from this experience.
You can use your journalling as a way to keep track of the changes you are going to make to your life, and to encourage yourself to push ahead.
It can be so easy to slip back into old habits, and to convince yourself that you don't really need to make any big changes in your life.
If this starts to become the case for you, then try to look back on the decisions that you made for yourself over the last few months. You may have started to feel like you were giving your time to the wrong things, or that you haven't really had much time for yourself at all. You may have decided that you want to step away from social media, or to take better care of yourself — physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
Whatever it is you concluded that you want for your life, don't be afraid to remind yourself of the reasons why.
Life After Lockdown
As you start to move forwards with getting your life back to normal and also making positive changes, it is most important to be gentle with yourself.
You may have big plans, and be excited to push ahead with them, but overwhelming yourself could be damaging at this time. So take it slow, check in with yourself often, and allow yourself the time and space to truly explore your feelings.
Having additional support for big changes is always a good idea, and this is something I aim to provide every week with my newsletter!
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