The last weeks and months in the UK and around the world have been confusing and alarming. You know, as I do, that the slightest glimmer of ‘bad’ news has an impact on our confidence and mental health, no matter how much we may feel we don’t care about all that political stuff.
For many years I’ve been an avid follower of political goings-on. One of my personal treats is occasionally to buy the Irish Times or Guardian for a good dig into what’s happening out there. Sometimes I’d spend hours listening to news programmes on BBC radio and TV, with the radio on in the background, especially when I’m cooking.
Generally I just read/hear the info then go on about my life. But these past months I’ve been completely rocked – or nearly so.
Now, I don’t know the ins and outs of all that’s happening in our various ‘halls of power’. Who is running what show? All I know is that the tsunami of speculation, stunt-playing and what-aboutery has become too much. Like you, I feel we are in choppy, dangerous waters. The great news? The lifebelt is in our hands.
And now, with the impending election……. Even writing about it now makes my heart race. This causes all sorts of stress chemicals to canter around my body, as it would yours. Many tomes have been written on the impacts of these stress chemicals – emotional, mental, physical and spiritual. Enough already!!
Time to make a positive change
Individual confidence is highly subjective. What helps me to feel confident can be totally different from what helps you to feel confident. However, in these times of ongoing uncertainty, the danger exists of an unconscious, unintended fall in our levels of self-confidence. Fear increases, interrupting our ability to think clearly, make rational decisions, relax, be health and communicate well. The ripples just go on.
Right now, make a Conscious Intentional Choice
The key factor in these three simple steps is your natural ability to make a conscious, intentional choice. About how much news you’re going to listen to, how many websites you’re going to explore, how much ‘what-if’ speculation you’re going to engage in or listen to. Then give yourself permission to use one or more of these simple steps.
- Get out in the fresh air: Give yourself some quiet, peaceful time out in the fresh air. By the water, in a nearby forest, through the fields. Main thing is to give your listening head a rest. No music, podcast or other normally lovely things. Let your brain and heart have a wee waltz together as you’re walking. At least 30 mins.
- Box Breathing: My friend and amazing coach colleague Lisa Wynn offered this in my Peace and Quiet FB Group. When you begin to feel a bit overwhelmed, or even just want to be quiet for quiet’s sake, do a set of Box Breathing. Breathe in slowly to count of 4; hold for 4; release for 4; pause for 4. Do this four times. Give yourself the gift of this conscious breathing several times a day.
- Invite in Stability and Strength: Think of a time when you felt grounded and peaceful. Could be when you held your sleeping baby , or when you walked through lovely woods, or maybe even sitting with a purring cat on your lap. Whatever works for you. Really remember the feeling of being grounded and peaceful Where in your body do you feel it most? Focus on that part of your body, and with your breath allow it to expand throughout your body. Now, next time you’re feeling a bit off-kilter, simply remember that occasion, and the feelings you felt. Allow them to spread through your body. And feel the peace
You Have the Choice
Mind you, another thing you could do is simply talk back to the radio or TV, telling them what you really think. Then turn it off. There – feel any better?
Lots more ideas will be on offer in my new e-book, available shortly. The key thing to remember is you have the choice to take care of your confidence, mental health and peace and quiet. Make that choice consciously and intentionally. The awareness that you are making that choice, to come home to your confident P-n-Q centre, will hugely enhance your health.
Here’s my invitation: Choose just one of these steps, do it a number of times, observe how it helps, or not. When you find one that works, keep it in your personal Toolbox. And if you find that using all three in any one day works, go for it.
If you’d like to let me know how you’re getting on, or have any questions, simply email. I’m here to help.
’til next time, in a couple of weeks, be gentle with You.