Resilience is a muscle that needs to be built with practice.
In Januray, we were all sharing our plans and goals for 2020 – a new decade full of hope and possibilities…and then 2020 threw everything but the kitchen sink at us. Resilience is called for more than at any other time in our lives.
Now we are all trying to navigate a whole new world. We’re trying to learn how to cope up with the stress caused by coronavirus, how to protect our emotional health, how to manage work life balance, how to deal with anxiety and fear in these times, how to deal with corona related financial anxiety, how to handle kids and so on.A friend who shared that her husband’s annoying loud noise when he chews is driving her crazy.
Fear and anxiety are at unimaginable levels.
Although none of us can control what happens around us. What we CAN control are our own actions.
There are two choices… react or respond. The habitual pattern is to react, particularly in these times of extreme stress and uncertainty. It’s a normal but unconscious habit that can leave us spinning our wheels and build upon our fears.
The other is to respond. This is how we build greater levels of resilience. To consciously stop and experience moments of peace and calm many times an hour, to interrupt the old patterns and build healthy new ones. We can consciously choose be thoughtful in our response, even during these incredibly challenging times. This is how we become resilient people.
When we change our internal habit from react to respond we build layers of emotional resilience, this new habit helps us to remain calm when faced with a hard or stressful situation.
3 Simple Ways to Build Resilience During COVID-19
- Crossing the Midline Grab a ball or anything within arm’s reach (water bottle, keys, etc.). Notice your angst or distress and rate it from 1 – 10. Now, begin to pass the ball from one hand to the other, passing it back and forth – making sure to cross the midline of your body. Do this for a minute and then check in with that angst or distress and notice what number it is now. If there is still some anxiety, toss the ball back and forth for another minute. Repeat for as many times as you need to make it dissipate or bring it down to a manageable level.
- Just Yawn! Another simple yet incredibly effective technique. Take a moment to yawn as big as possible. Really drop your jaw – this is great! Dropping your jaw stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which counteracts the “fight or flight” response. Then when you find yourself yawning, taking a big deep breath, you are flooding your body with the wonderful bio chemicals associated with the relaxation response. Repeat as needed!
- Three Part Breath Imagine a beautiful pool of cool, healing energy at your feet – whatever color appears is fine. Imagine that you can breathe this in through your feet upwards in a three-part breath. Imagine taking a third of a breath through your feet, just up to your knees and pause. Take another third of a breath up to your belly, and pause. Take that final third of a breath up to the top of your head and pause. Hold it for a moment, then a big exhale, washing away that which no longer serves you. Repeat as many times as you like
I’ve spent more than 20 years of research on holistic, natural and scientifically proven ways to do more than just manage anxiety, but build emotional resilience and truly break free from its vice-like grip.