Experiencing unprecedented levels of change in lockdown has been a trying time. Emotional resilience and wellbeing have been a focus to maintain mental health. Try these five pieces of life coach advice for self development and personal growth post- lockdown.
The period of lockdown has highlighted many lessons and personal insights. Some may have slowly come to light over time whilst others may have smacked you right in the face.
Here are five pieces of life coach advice to help you move forwards in life after lockdown.
Lockdown emotions have been a rollercoaster ride. One minute, worry, fear or unsure of how to step forward; the next minute, relief at the slower pace. You may have lost your patience with family and friends, but were able at times to exercise more patience than you thought you ever had!
1. Everything is changing; we are changing
We have had to face change, full frontal.
We are changing how we live, love, work, think and spend our time. Behaviours are shifting, thought patterns are taking new turns and daily habits are getting a total overhaul.
After the initial shock of the pandemic, we are opening our eyes to different ways of living and exploring opportunities in this continually unfolding ‘new normal’.
Life coach advice: This is an opportunity to ask yourself:
What do I want more of in my life? What do I want less of?
What makes me happy? Versus what do I want to let go of?
Whose company uplifts me; who would I like to spend more time with? Who stresses me out; who could I live without spending time with?
What activities do I enjoy doing, that bring me pleasure? Versus what are unenjoyable drains on my time and energy?
What have I ignored in the last few years and what do I want to focus on now?
Take pen to paper and answer these questions truthfully. Then ask yourself; what action can I take to implement each change?
2. Work life has shifted dramatically
How we make a living has taken the spotlight since the pandemic began.
Working from home, furlough, redundancy, the closure of small businesses, budgets slashes, many of the self-employed out of work completely, fear of financial security; it’s been uncomfortable so far, to say the least.
Many of you have learnt the benefits of resilience at work.
Life coach advice: You have been gifted the time and space to really consider how you want your work life to be in the future:
What does your ideal ‘new normal’ look like?
Is it time to redesign your life and redesign how you work?
Can you give you and your family a better life balance?
Can you now ask your employer to let you work in a different way which improves your life and mental wellbeing?
Without the time and energy prison of a job, is this an opportunity to finally explore launching your own idea?
3. A good routine has become a saviour in life after lockdown
With or without children, having a daily routine helps us maintain control and a sense of security over how life unfolds. Many studies reveal a daily routine significantly lowers feelings of stress, worry and anxiety, which in turn reduces an excess of cortisol, the stress hormone, in your body. A good routine boosts self resilience and mental health.
A good routine also sets up healthy habits such as simple exercise and includes time for creativity and relaxation.
Life coach advice: A simple morning routine impacts your mindset and how you will experience the day. It doesn’t have to take up too much time.
This morning routine takes thirty minutes:
Rise at the same time each day
Drink a hot lemon water or a herbal tea to aid hydration and digestion
Complete the Morning Pages journaling exercise to clear your mind and aid creativity (see Julia Cameron’s book, The Artist’s Way)
Silently meditate or breathe for 5 minutes
What 30-minute morning routine do you have or could you implement? Read 8 Ways to Create a Good Routine to Help You Thrive for some inspiration and ideas
4. Creative hobbies build neuroplasticity
Extra time at home may have enabled you to spend more energy on your hobbies or explore new creative ways to entertain or express yourself. Baking, sewing, reading, writing, painting, music and design provide joy and a release from negative thought loops.
I have rediscovered playing the flute and reading music, 1000-piece jigsaw puzzles and my sewing machine after many years.
According to neuroscientist and author, Tara Swart, a creative hobby increases your brain activity which in turn helps you to think more creatively about how you live your life:
“Of all the elements of brain agility, including reframing creativity to allow us to design a future we can feel good about; it is creativity that can harness the most from the power of neuroplasticity (the ability of the brain to change itself). Change starts with us.”
Life coach advice: If you haven't already, which new or old creative hobby can you explore?
5. How we spend our money has shifted
With less income and maybe an unsettled financial security for the near future, you may be re-thinking how you spend your money. Less materialistic expenditure and more investment in the Self, ideas and experiences has become a very popular topic with my coaching clients.
Life coach advice: What is going to make you happier; spending money on the high street or gifting yourself a valuable online course to learn something new? Redesigning the garden or doing it yourself and using the money to develop an idea you have dreamed about for years?