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New beginnings: regaining confidence post-Covid

Updated: Dec 7, 2020

Sunrise new beginnings

What a year it has been for us all. Lockdowns and social distancing rules have left many of us feeling like we have been on a very scary rollercoaster!

When the first lockdown kicked in, I was brimming with ideas and aspirations of how to make the most of what I framed as an ‘opportunity’.

Hilary McLellan
Hilary in lockdown

And yes, I did make the most of not commuting - using that 'free time' to do self-fulfilling and worthy things. The daily barre workouts I introduced are still keeping me sane.

Yet, during the second lockdown, I found myself facing a number of personal challenges that I know many of you will recognise. I seemed to suffer from low mood far more regularly than in first lock down, the idea of working in isolation and/or virtually often eroded by motivation to complete tasks. Without the glorious weather we had in the first lockdown, the shorter days, gloomy skies and little things like noticing I need to put the heating on in the day; all added weight to a low mood. I had feelings of anxiety about earnings in 2021, about my kids’ future (the youngest is 25) - even though pre-Covid-19 they had all reached varying points of independence and job security.

Even my confidence to use social media has dropped because if there is little response it feels more personal than it has ever felt before.

One thing that has certainly given me a boost is the publication of my article in the latest edition of Ethical Boardroom – the subscription-based magazine that delivers in-depth coverage of global governance issues.

In this article, I talk about the importance of self-awareness for leaders to guide their organisations through challenging times

But what else have I done to lift my mood?

  • Diarise conversations with friends and colleagues

  • Diarise time to do my barre workouts (five times a week since lockdown has made a significant positive contribution to how I feel)

  • Consciously start conversations with my husband and daughter (my lockdown housemates) even though there are times when I’d cheerfully not do so despite loving them lots!

  • Just get out there and walk in the mud and bath the dog regardless of the increasingly boggy fields. It’s often better than I imagine and I focus my mind on the beauty of nature in this season to divert my first thoughts of wishing for summer!

  • Keep a resilience bingo card – see further down.

  • Tell others about the above. Find solace in I’m not alone but also ask for others to support me in ‘doing’ this list

  • Laugh and find humour in life. Especially how I will often not follow my own advice!

Resilience Bingo Card

On my card, I write a number of things I know will ‘re-centre’ me when anxiety and stress overshadow my best self.

Getting outside, walking, listening to music, chatting to friends, exercising, horse riding are some of the things on my card.

My goal is to tick them all off! When I’m stressed it can often feel uncomfortable - even irritating - to plan and do these things.

Things to look forward to in 2021

I’ve been learning and building a better product for those using Your Virtual Mind Trainer.

What we are keeping:

  • Expertly (and personally) scripted audios by clinical psychologist – we use our personal qualification and experience to craft each line you listen to.

  • Expertly (and personally) filmed 360 videos of nature – we scramble up and down hills to find you the best views!

  • Close relationships with academia and research to ensure Mind Trainer is robust as well as unique in the market.

What we are adding to your subscription:

  • Male and female voices for every audio

  • Choice of audio and video only

  • Personal account, your favourites, feelings log and rewards

  • Research journey and findings with Aston University

  • Devices will include VR Headset so you can experience your mind training immersively or just take time out to be in nature (with no audio)

  • We are offering this in the USA and Northern America

  • We have a single sign on offering for organisations to buy bundles of licences

  • The development of an organisational/ personal leadership/ coaching offering where audios are more coach-like to provide a straightforward 4 min guidance to help you re-centre in the middle of a pressurised situation.

Here's a sneak peek...

All the above will be revealed in January 2021 bringing you positive vibes and focus on a healthy and happy new year.

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