Currently, there is a flurry of conversation online about self care practices as a result of the global Covid-19 pandemic. The personal effects to mental health have been significant and the world wide web has been quick to pump out a plethora of guides and online courses to help overcome personal stresses.

For many, a more practical approach right now is what is most helpful. Self care practices are vital at a time like this. However, they aren’t necessarily enough to help us to navigate the current circumstances in a fuller capacity.

At Sustainability Knowledge Group, we believe wholeheartedly in the power of overcoming – no matter the circumstances. It is the foundation of our work and the baseline to how we approach business with you. This applies not only to the current circumstances, but to every area of our Sustainability work. We help you flourish.

Recently, our team came across this powerful image online. It has recently gone viral and we wanted to harness its power, sharing it as a guide for you to draw motivation from.

We were inspired – and we very much hope you will be also.

Here is your 4 step guide to placing yourself in the best possible position during the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond:

Step 1: Fear Zone
If your mind is busy with concern right now, then you aren’t alone. You might be avoiding important e-mails, forwarding on scaremongering statistics, or panic purchasing online.

Your fear may even be manifesting itself in a ‘fire-fighting’ approach to business, where you are diving into a multitude of tasks at one time to feel as if you are coping.

Simply ignoring these feelings won’t help you to overcome them ultimately. In order to remove fear, you must first acknowledge it. Take note of your impulses and allow your true feelings to surface. You will remove much of the venom in order to then make far clearer minded choices moving forwards.

Step 2: Learning Zone
In order to truly learn, we must allow ourselves to reflect upon the information that has been imparted to us. Right now, there is an extraordinary amount of noise coming from news desks on a near constant basis. Consuming too much of this can cloud your thinking and negatively affect your approach to daily tasks in your work and home life. It is simply not sustainable!

To power up your personal education, stick to trusted and reputable news sources. Limit your consumption whenever you become overwhelmed. Switch off notifications from unnecessary or irrelevant apps you might have been using before lockdown to reduce your reactivity.

By doing so, you will clear your mind of negativity leaving space for far better ideas to form.

Step 3: Growth Zone
Shock can leave us numb. But at this stage of the world events, we have a better idea of the situation and its effects. We may not have a definite idea of what the short or long term future will hold, but we do have the power to take back control of the present moment.

In fact, this mindful method of staying in the present could be the element you were missing out long before the virus arrived into our lives.

Try offering the services and skills you most enjoy to others in your network. It can be volunteering to disseminate food to vulnerable communities, or simply make a phone call to people you know are alone. Not only will it keep you feeling you are in progression, you never know what new connections or opportunities could arise from doing so.

Furthermore, learn to appreciate what you already have access to in your life. What is important to you? Maybe value more things that were taken for granted. This will greatly enhance your perspective on how to navigate forwards once the pandemic events eventually come to pass.

Step 4: Action Zone
Right now, everything is not as it once was. By trying to force your old habits, projects and interests into this entirely new environment you will only end up frustrating yourself. Embrace the changes that have occurred by injecting some positive action into the situation. Its impressive how this step is connected to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

You don’t have to single handedly change the world. It’s all about partnerships (SDG 17). You can make significant difference to those around you by supporting them in a variety of ways. You could donate financially to a cause that is making a lot of difference right now, like Health (SDG 3), support women who have been affected by the pandemic (SDG 5). Consider offering your skills for free to those who would not otherwise be able to access education (SDG 4). Or you could spend time being creative with those you are in home quarantine with, to boost the collective mood. Volunteering for an online “human lending library” is a fantastic way to share your skills and expertise in a positive and progressive manner. We hope that this could be something that brings you a huge amount of joy and might even become something you take forwards, beyond the limitations of lockdown.

A Unique set of Circumstances
It’s important to remember that these are unprecedented times we are living in. None of us could have prepared for the impact the pandemic would have. It is important to embrace the situation as the unique set of circumstances that they are. Avoid the temptation to cross compare the “before” with the “after”.

Like any other crisis we have faced in life in human history, this is certainly not a permanent situation. Additionally, some of the most inspiring examples of community spirit and business adaptability have grown from this. This too, shall pass.

Take each day as it comes, applying the guide steps from this article as you navigate your way. Development is not linear, and your experience will vary. This is natural to the process and something to embrace both now and post-lockdown.

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