If there’s a lesson that the last few years have taught us, it’s that the world can be incredibly unstable. It’s not just our own lives and jobs that we must manage, but we are also affected as a global community by health, financial, infrastructure, and political turmoil. Even while coping with our own personal challenges (like my battle with chronic Tick Borne Illness), we can be thrust into an array of issues from the world around us. It can be difficult to maintain a forward-looking mindset when so much seems out of our control—but we can’t allow ourselves to get bogged down. So, how can we look to the future and maintain a stable mindset in an unstable world?
Here are a few things you can do to maintain a healthy mindset even when your situation is less than ideal:
Be real about the situation. If something is upsetting, disappointing, or hard, it’s good to acknowledge that the situation is not what you hoped it would be. It’s not healthy to pretend that everything is great when it’s not. Hard times happen, even to good people.
Step away or unplug
If you have a small issue that’s starting to overwhelm you, step away for a bit and take some time to clear your mind. Sometimes just getting a cup of coffee or a walk around the block can help you see a solution or a different path. If it’s something bigger that’s all over the news, it might be a good idea to unplug from your devices. Receiving constant notifications and updates can be a burden, and doom scrolling has never helped anyone.
Go for a walk, take a bike ride or practice some yoga or mindful breathing. Staying active, at whatever level you are capable of, has a host of benefits for both the body and mind and helps support good mental health. This is also a way to carve out some self-care time. Schedule your active time on your calendar and stick to your commitment to yourself.
Have an idea of what you want for your future. In an ideal world, what does it look like? Make short-term and long-term goals for both your personal and professional life. It’s hard to look to the future and have a positive mindset if you’re unclear on what it is you want.
Act based on what is in your control
So much is out of our control. It can be hard to navigate a situation that is so far removed from our own actions. Understand that those things are out of your control and make decisions based on what is in your power. Choose to be efficient in the use of your limited time, talent, and treasure.
Identify those things for which you are grateful. This could be your family or friends, your home, your hobbies, or something as simple as a new season of your favorite TV show. Be thankful for what is going well, even when not everything is headed in the right direction.
Ask for help
If you need help, ask for it! Don’t let yourself drown in a problem when someone could help you. It might be something that a person can do for you, or it might just be asking a friend to let you vent about some concerns. If you’re really struggling, consider speaking to a therapist or your doctor.
Everyone recharges in a different way, but make time to feed your soul. Hang out with friends. Read a book with a cup of tea. Soak in a hot bath. Take a run. Meditate. Just find something that helps you feel refreshed and allow yourself the opportunity to recharge.
Our world can be an unstable place, and that instability can cause uncertainty within us. Practice these tips to help future-proof your life and find a positive mindset and stability in an unstable world.