The lockdown experience has been likened to a storm that we are all experiencing together – however, there have been some deep polarities in how some people have experienced this particular storm. The crisis stimulus is the same, yet many are experiencing this very differently. A helpful way of analogising these differences is that some people feel like they are in the eye of the storm being battered by rain, some feel like they are in the choppy waters focusing on keeping steady and others feel like they are at the outskirts bobbing along – much the same as they were before.
So, what’s helping self leaders to navigate the lockdown in a healthier way?
When the lockdown started there was a dramatic surge in messaging about the fantastic opportunities that lockdown affords; learn a new language, take up yoga, read all the books you haven’t been getting around to, deep clean your home, take online courses, deliver your own content, become a master chef and much more.
Whilst many of these have merits, self leaders are able to select which messages are important to them and stop feelings of inadequacy in their tracks when they decide that doing-all-the-things isn’t the best way of navigating the crisis. The reality is, that in a crisis, we need more space to process and assess our priorities; continuing the productivity (instead of effectiveness) drive can be unhelpful. Allowing room for un-productive time can help self leaders to navigate crises more effectively.
You might think “oh, I’m not a self leader, yet” because your mood and wellbeing have been negatively impacted by the crisis. However, noticing these changes and recognising that this is a perfectly normal response to stress and change is a sign that you are a powerful self leader!
The key thing that helps self leaders ride the waves of highs and lows during a crisis is that they recognise that changes to moods etc are your body and brain doing their jobs properly, trying to keep you safe, and that you shouldn’t be comparing to your pre-lockdown self.
Following on naturally from looking at how self leaders navigate the dips in those waves, it’s an essential component of effectively navigating a crisis that self leaders are able to step back and appreciate small wins. Getting out in nature every day, prioritising cooking from scratch and having more time with family or using spare time to try out new hobbies are some of the things causing celebrations currently. Self leaders have the awareness to reflect on and reconsider what’s important to them in life.
As self leaders, we recognise that sharing our successes with others is a helpful way of prolonging the positive feelings we have when we accomplish something, creating a ripple effect of positivity and spreading the power of self leadership.
Here are some tips for embracing your inner self leader during a crisis:
Adaptability and resilience are the key skills needed to weather the storm we are currently experiencing globally. Thankfully, there is a powerful self leader inside each of us who possesses these amazing qualities.
If you need support in drawing out your inner self leader or want to harness the power of a team of self leaders, The Self Leadership Initiative provides bespoke training and workshops to Charities, Universities and Corporates to make that happen. Get in touch today to discover the full power of your people.