Finding a Positive Outlook Even When Times are Challenging
Anyone could be forgiven for feeling a bit down right now and in troubling times. There is so much hard news to deal with the moment one turns on the TV, the radio, the Internet, or even the smartphone. Everywhere around us economies seem to be staggering, a COVID-19 pandemic rages without a cure or control, and people are losing their livelihoods as companies retract and everyone seems to go into bunker mode for safety. The continuous feed of bad news has been going for a month and half now at least, enough to feel like it’s everywhere and unending.
Doing the Impossible?
Trying to stay upbeat may just as much a challenge as it could be trying to stay uninfected in a crowded room these days. With a collective pressure downward, people feeling short with each other, unsocial and negative are fairly predictable responses. We feel like things are out of control, and our normal lives have been upended by too much change too fast and too disconcerting for our brains to adapt to quickly. However, here’s what we do control: our personal outlook. We can’t control what’s going on outside our homes, but we can control how we choose to react to it, and how we choose to let our moods play out. This is not some new, novel idea just created in 2020. Mind balance and intentional outlook control have been around for centuries, and most people understand the approach from far more familiar terms like medication, calming exercises, and self-control focusing.
One Step at a Time
At first, trying to develop a positive outlook intentionally may seem extremely hard, even impossible. Every moment our minds start itching and worrying about new questions, or what can be done to help or get help, or whether avoidance is possible and where. And it can be extremely tough to handle and keep control of when we are really isolated and physically separated from others. One approach towards mental control is to use a technique known as “re-framing.” This method involves changing how we deal with the questions irritating our minds instead of trying to ignore them. One approach is categorizing: can I do anything about this issue or not? If so, what can I do – that means control. If I can’t then it should be ignored – this focuses energy on items one can take action on instead of worrying, which produces nothing. Another way to use re-framing is to change the approach to the question. Instead of asking why there is no easy solution, one could instead ask what can be done to provide an alternate solution. Again, this approach is entirely in one’s mind, but it provides a very powerful paradigm shift from a negative outlook to a positive outlook. And one doesn’t need a scientific degree to know that when one’s outlook is better, people feel better too, causing a reinforcing cycle.
We Will Get Through This
One fellow, Victor Frankl, could easily claim the title for having the highest potential to be feel the world was against him. Frankl went through the Holocaust in World War II. Yet even his perspective rings the same to stay positive: “Forces beyond your control can take away everything you possess except one thing, your freedom to choose how you respond to a situation. You cannot control what happens to you in life, but you can always control what you will feel and do about what happens to you.” At Gold Smart and MyGold we wholeheartedly agree, times are extremely frustrating and challenging right now. We regularly meet and work with people as gold buyers, seeing learning about lives as people sell gold and change their lives. But right now is different as a far more significant moment because maybe we feel our mortality collectively and individually due to COVID-19. But remember, we still have now and what we want and hope for our future. We each still have our goals and our outlook, our families, our loved ones, and our friends, and our ability to stay productive. And that’s what makes us the most human even in the most challenging of times.