Learn From the Process
Over the past couple of months, especially since the outbreak of the coronavirus, several studies have been carried out to ascertain the psychological effect of the pandemic on people and how they are coping with the crisis.
In a publication released in April 2020, psychologists from the University of Ibadan, the University of Ilorin and the North-West University in South Africa presented the results of a survey carried out between March and April 2020 to examine the psychological distress experienced by Nigerians amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Their findings exposed the prevalence of insomnia – difficulty in sleeping; depression and worries about the future as well as other post-traumatic stress symptoms like anxiety and loneliness.
While it’s understandable to feel low in uncertain times like this, it is important to develop resilience in order to make the best of the situation and come out better. In fact, some other studies have shown that people who have a positive outlook and report more positive emotions have an increased ability to quickly recover from stressful and challenging circumstances, solve problems and demonstrate creativity. Actually, some benefits of a positive mind-set including improved immune system and stress management abilities are especially useful during this COVID-19 era.
The recovery stories of over 6,800 Nigerians from the deadly virus confirm that a positive mindset among many other factors helped to deal with the crisis. Individuals like 29-year-old Nigerian activist Oluwaseun Ayodeji Osowobi and Lagos Based IT professional Emmanuel “Manny” Asika, who are both COVID-19 survivors and advocates are shining examples. By their acknowledgement, they revealed that the experience was indeed an ordeal but the positive energy from caregivers in their isolation centres helped them to recover. Emmanuel Asika even shared a picture of the positive words pasted on the wall of the isolation ward to help patients maintain their optimism through the crisis. That is very thoughtful.
The truth is, even if you are not infected by the virus, you have been affected by its resultant socio-economic implications. So you need to maintain a positive mindset too and I’ll like to share 3 ways you can develop and maintain such a mindset.
1. Stay Away From Negative People
American Televangelist, Joel Osteen plainly said that “You cannot expect to live a positive life if you hang with negative people.” You need to make a conscious effort to protect what comes into your mind. While things may look unpleasant, you need to distance yourself from people who always see the glass as half-empty instead of half-full. If you have to, stay away from people who feed your fears and worries, please do. Take it a step forward, avoid some social media handles that only propagate negativity. You might have to unfollow or block them even on WhatsApp for your own psychological well being.
2. Learn From the Process
Winston Churchill once said, “Don’t waste a good crisis”. We should train ourselves to see the purpose of the process. It may sound like a cliché, but everybody who has experienced fulfilment in life has several tales of difficult curves in the process of becoming successful that would almost be as valuable (sometimes even more valuable) than the end result. In the midst of a difficult situation, be deliberate about seeking opportunities to grow and learn from the process.
3. Fill Your Mind with Positive Thoughts
It’s not enough to avoid negative influences; your mind has to be filled with something, you have to make sure it’s positive. To do this, find books, movies, and documentaries with positive messages. Watch TED talks, inspiring life stories or even motivational videos like 90SecondsWithFBO. You should also deliberately associate with positive people, it’s not enough staying away from negative people. As you do so, you fill your mind with positive thoughts, while engaging in helpful conversations and activities. So, surround yourself with people with positive mindset
In closing, it’s important to point out that having a positive outlook is not the same thing as ignoring reality. It just means you recognize that in spite of happenings around, you can choose hope and overcome your current challenges.
Remember, You Have Only One Life to Live, MAKE IT COUNT!