Are you maximising or minimising your mental strength?
Was there ever a time when we needed more power in the words we use?
Regular readers of our content will know we talk a lot about reframing our language.
At the best of times, this gives us better results, whether that’s shifting our mindset or influencing others.
And in these strangest of times, our words have even greater power – for good and for bad.
There is plenty going on that drains and depletes us, and we gain immeasurable benefit from finding ways to nourish and nurture ourselves and those around us.
It starts with our language.
Now, we’re not suggesting that you get all “Pollyanna”, or seek relentless positivity that simply doesn’t reflect your reality right now.
But some shifts and tweaks in your language will lift your mood, energy and productivity. And that will help you be as ready as possible for recovery later from this crazy situation.
If you’re anything like us – by which we mean HUMAN – you probably feel like you lack the control you normally have over day-to-day life.
The language we use can increase this sense of helplessness when we say things like:
- I’m stuck at home.
- I’m isolated from friends and family.
- I can’t get anything done.
- My kids aren’t learning enough.
- There are too many distractions to work.
- I’m afraid my boss/colleagues will judge me.
- I am unproductive.
- I’m bored.
- There’s no end in sight.
All these words create what we call an ‘external locus of control’, which takes ALL the power out of your hands.
We can’t do much about the measures currently in place to protect the vulnerable and support our emergency workers.
But we can CHOOSE to use words that flip each of those statements and give us more of an ‘internal locus of control’, for example:
- I’m staying at home to help keep other people safe.
- I’m staying close to my friends and family thanks to the phone and internet.
- I’m doing all that I can, and it’s enough.
- My children are safe and well at home, and we’re happy to go with the flow.
- I’m working well in a new and unexpected way.
- We’re all in the same boat, and support each other.
- I’m doing XYZ things now I have some time to do them.
- This will end, we will recover, and I will be ready.
Again, we must emphasise – this isn’t about pinning on your biggest fake smile and pretending to feel something you don’t.
But it is about using some practical tools and making some simple tweaks, to help yourself and those around you manage the current situation as best you can.
Because this situation will end. And don’t we need to be ready to recover (or even resume) when it does?