How to Get Through a Troubling Time—Meaning Now
Our world is changing exponentially. Just as 9/11 reshaped so much about our lives, so will this pandemic. Will our interactions with family, friends, colleagues and in public places ever be the same? Will the compulsory changes we’re practicing become permanent?
It’s too early to predict what will be, but I think it’s important to acknowledge what “is now.” Many of us are feeling fearful and sad. But grief expert David Kessler put it all in perspective for me in a recent Harvard Business Review interview. “The loss of normalcy; the fear of economic toll; the loss of connection. This is hitting us and we’re grieving.” And not surprisingly, he points out, “we’re not used to collective grief.”
When we’re faced with uncertainty, anxiety and the emotions it produces, we must find ways to stay healthy, balanced, fulfilled—and most significantly, positive! My advice is to pay attention to what we feel and focus on gratitude and optimism. New research shows that practicing gratitude can improve resilience, lower stress, boost overall strength—and even make us feel more joyful, and optimists have a lower risk of disease and mortality. With that in mind, read on for insights and tools we can use to stay optimistic, remember how fortunate we are and envision our best selves now.