March 31, 2020

How to Thrive in Tumultuous Times (& 2 Questions we should all be Asking Ourselves).

The Corona epidemic has created unprecedented chaos worldwide.

Global travel is suspended. Schools and restaurants are closing. Stock markets are plummeting. Over half of the Earth’s population is in quarantine, thousands are getting sick, and people are dying.

Not even the last century’s two big wars were ever able to shut the world as much as this virus has managed to do in just one month.

Yet I would like to talk to you about possibilities. Yes, I know that goes against everything your fight-or-flight response is telling you is vital right now.

Just give me a few minutes. It could change how the next few months, and even years, turn out for you. For all of us.

We all have a natural tendency to go into survival mode when things get rough. Trying to survive, however, is based on fear, and anything based on fear only creates more fear. In this case, it has created a worldwide panic that creates confusion instead of the clarity that is required.

As crazy as this may sound, what if something else entirely was possible? What if this is the reset of the world that many of us have been asking for?

What would be possible if we chose to go beyond trying to survive and actually find a way to…thrive?

Here are my top four tips on how to thrive even in tumultuous times:

1. Don’t buy into the panic.

If you turn on the news or talk to a friend, it is pretty clear just how much panic is all around. It’s like everything else that was going on just a few weeks ago has just disappeared.

What if I told you that 98 percent of the thoughts, feelings, and emotions that you experience are not yours? We are all connected to each other. We are all aware of each other. We are like a radio tower on the top of a skyscraper picking up on every signal within miles.

So the next time you start to feel panic, stop and ask, “Is this mine?”

If things lighten up in your world when you ask, that panic is not yours. You are simply perceiving the people in the world. And when you know the alarm is not yours, you don’t have to be at the mercy of it. You get to choose.

2. Choose your perspective.

What you decide is so, becomes so. Another way of saying that is that your perspective, your point of view, creates your reality.

Here is the key: Your reality does not create your point of view.

If you start to spiral down into thinking the worst, remember this! Remember that your point of view creates your reality and that you choose your perspective of everything.

Choose something different. Change your mind. Look at things with another view. Change the perspective of your experience.

Ask: “What is right about this that I am not getting?”

Another easy way to change your point of view is to say, “Interesting point of view; I have that point of view.” Say it a few times.

What occurs is that the perspective, the conclusion of what is going on, that you’ve been holding on to becomes simply interesting, rather than real and true. And then, when it is just interesting, you can let it go.

3. If this wasn’t a problem, what would the possibilities be?

When we focus on what is wrong in the world, we blind ourselves from seeing possibilities and solutions. When our point of view is that the world is full of problems, all we will find is what supports that perspective.

Questions are the key to changing this.

When your mind is running the same dialogue over and over, you will be stuck in worry. By asking a question, you disrupt that pattern.

Here are two questions that work well in tumultuous times:

“If this wasn’t a problem, what would the possibilities be?” 

“What actually is possible here that I have never considered?”

One more thing—when you ask these questions, don’t look for an answer. It’s not about finding the solution. It is about disrupting the mind chatter that stops you from seeing possibilities.

4. Laugh!

If you are wondering how one could possibly laugh when the world is seemingly going to hell in a wastebasket, I would say, “How can you not laugh?”

Laughter heals the planet. Laughter is a pattern-interrupt. Laughter gives you a different perspective. Laughter is one of the greatest gifts you can give to yourself, others, and the world.

Allow yourself to laugh at people buying humongous amounts of toilet paper to prepare for the quarantine. And if you are one of them, laugh even more.

Give yourself the gift to not make anything more significant than it is. The world is changing; it requires your ability to shift and turn on a dime. Let the drama go. Embrace the chaos.

To thrive in tumultuous times, you have to know that you know. Don’t buy the fear of other people’s perspectives as real.

Ask questions and trust that you will know what to do and what to choose.

Because you do.

Now more than ever, the world is asking for you to show up as unique and different as you really are.

The future requires you to thrive. Not just survive.

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