It isn’t hard today to take any glitch in our physical or mental state as a potential sign of COVID-19. This compounds the stress level that we are already feeling due to restrictions in our daily lives. This stress can accumulate and become damaging to our thoughts and actions as well as physical wellness.
How can we create a way to deflect all the negativity in our world today? How can we create a positive and more productive way to welcome each day?
First, let’s define the difference between mindset and mindfulness. According to Mind Heart Space … mindset refers to the set of beliefs we have about ourselves and our potential. … In contrast, mindfulness is the practice of noticing the degree in which we are identified with our ideas and beliefs—where we mistakenly take our thoughts to be us.”
Movement – doing purposeful movement, stretching, yoga, walking, early in the day can aid in preparing your physical body for the day as well as help to anchor your mental state. It is also a great way to clear the mind if you are stuck or overwhelmed. Although any exercise might be helpful, I usually rely on walking – in the neighborhood, in the woods, on the beach – to help me find a quiet time for peace, reflection and creativity. According to medium.com, the first three hours of your day can make all the difference in your day.
I know that 30 years ago I bought a daily meditation book – Promise of a New Day, by Karen Casey and Martha Vanceburg. Since 1991 I have read the day’s message, not always daily, but often enough and on daily pages noted special happenings with the year. It now serves as a birthday, anniversary and special moments journal as well as providing an uplift for the start of my day.
Many people think that they are destined to be a certain way “exercise is not in my DNA,” “my heritage requires me to eat pasta daily,” “I am not a math/stem person.” Yes, you may have certain tendencies due to your heritage or family environment. However, you can change this mindset. If, you close your mind to believing you have capability in different areas, you will limit your ability to chase dreams, find new opportunities, learn and grow.
Another personal example, my sisters were good in math and science. I didn’t think I could ever be on the same level. Algebra through me for a loop initially and then I took a different class which was at a slower pace. I did okay. However, I continued to avoid numbers through high school and college. After several positions in non-number threatening jobs, I became a management trainee in a bank! And, lo and behold, after some introductory courses – accounting 1 and 2, I found that I really enjoyed working with numbers and business finance. Eventually, I built a business using my number ability to help other businesses.
It is good to challenge our capabilities – fitness, endurance, mindsets. What can you do, that you didn’t think you could do? Take a leap and give it a try. A positive approach to expanding our abilities also provides a positive impact on our immune system.
It is especially important in this pandemic environment that we learn to be comfortable with challenge and thinking differently. With all the reading I have done, I believe we are in the new normal and the new normal will continue to evolve. If we measure ourselves and abilities by our 2019 beliefs, we will be stuck and at a disadvantage going forward.