We’re often too hard on ourselves. We’ve survived these past epic times of isolation, not seeing smiles in public, fear of getting sick and much more. If you were lucky enough not to endure the loss of a loved one, why has it been hard to snap back now that you’ve been vaccinated? You might be thinking, “What is wrong with me?” or “Why can’t I motivate myself?” One reason may be that over the past 18 months you developed new habits that served you then (drinking, Netflix binging, junk food, staying isolated) but don’t serve you well now. It’s hard to break these habits – even as life returns to relative normal.
We are in what I call “The Great Transition” to a more normal life. It makes sense that you might feel challenged as you seek to get back to the life you want. Here are a few suggestions to help move ahead:
Change One Habit: Pick one habit you started doing in COVID times that you want to change. Set an intention to reduce or end it by substituting it for another activity. Research shows it takes 10 weeks or longer to change a habit you already have. I sometimes use the WOOP technique to help clients make changes.
Reframe and Rename: I ask clients, “What’s another way to think about how you got through the last year? Come up with a short statement that supports how you have been successful during COVID times. Example: “Even though I was isolated I took care of myself and others and continued to effectively work from home.”
Create Your “I Am ___” Statement: We know from neurolinguistics (how language is represented in the brain) that making a positive “I” statement helps change thinking patterns. A few examples include, “I am resilient!” or “I get the job done.” or “I boldly move ahead.” Clients sometimes elect to say these kinds of statements each day to reinforce new thoughts and feel more empowered.
I welcome talking with you about how you want to move forward during the Great Transition and ways I might be able to help. I like the Socrates quote, “The secret of change is to focus your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new.”