In speaking with a number of leaders over the past week I’m noticing a common theme. Without the normal routine, interaction and activity things are starting to shift and it can be difficult to create a new normal. Social distancing is pushing some people that are working from home (or not working at all) to get mentally numb.
It is well known that we as human beings often have a natural biological and psychological reaction to radical changes in routine. If you want to find out more check out the brilliant new book ‘Brace for Impact’ by Dr Amy Silver & Alessandra Edwards. The important thing is to do something to keep you physically and psychologically moving. Here are a few strategies:
Social Connecting: Rather than feeling isolated take the time to reconnect with others. This can be family and friends that you want to have a simple conversation with or a deep and meaningful conversation about life and how you may be struggling or overcoming in the current environment.
It can also be with staff, work colleagues, and clients that may also be feeling the impact from COVID19. I had a great conversation with a client that I had not spoken to in the past year (although we sent a few text messages, both of us had been too busy to connect and now have a bit more time!) As we caught up we reconnected on our family and also reassured one another by sharing a few ideas that each of us could use. Often by connecting with others we are reminded that we are not alone and that we are stronger with others than on our own.
Keep Your Brain Active. Ok be honest, how many movies and Netflix tv series have you been binge watching? Me too! I think it is good to take some time to switch off and escape for a while (I love going to the movies so I don’t have to think for awhile!), the flip side of this is when we just keep digital binging we don’t do any real thinking. So how can you keep your brain active? Here is a small list: read a new book, watch a TEDtalk, take an online course, create a white-paper, develop a new product idea, revisit your retirement strategy, create a ‘thinking of you’ card and post it to a friend, etc.
Be Physically Active-Move More. We know that when we physically exercise and move it releases chemicals called endorphins that make us feel more positive. With social distancing and people staying inside more (without the ability to go to gyms to exercise) we are starting to get a bit complacent. I have noticed it is a bit easier to stay in bed longer and not get out and be as active as easily as before. The impact this is having is massive. I normally would cover over 10,000 steps per day. Now I am lucky to do 2,000 steps. This results in less of these feel good chemicals that help us stay positive, not to mention putting on weight that makes us feel heavier!
So what are you going to do to keep your brain active and keep open to possibilities? In the next week I will be launching my new online learning platform that will enable leaders to access a number of courses and modules that include videos, downloadable resources and activity checklists that you can use to help navigate and stay effective as a leader. If you would like to find out more, please click here and we will reach out to you with more information.