Many of us thought it would be just a few weeks and then back to regular routines when the pandemic was first upon us. As time continued to move on, with no insight into when this would happen, each of us had our realities to face. Whether it was home-schooling, working remotely, or, as many experienced, no work at all due to business closings. And, for so many, all of the above was coming at them from all directions.
In addition to the day-to-day changes and the increased computer time, we had all these learning options thrown at us. In-person events morphed into virtual conferences and meetings, and opportunities to learn everything from how to bake bread to learning a new language were everywhere. Those of us who were already overwhelmed felt compelled to jump on the merry-go-round and soak up what we could via webinars, online workshops and seminars, throughout the day.
And then came the COVID resolutions – not to be confused with the annual New Year’s resolutions – once we realized we would “be on our own” and away from others for an indefinite amount of time. For some, it was tackling those “honey-do” projects such as painting, cleaning out those cluttered closets or, getting in the best shape ever. For others, it was more of a spiritual time to slow down to reflect while taking time to catch up on their reading.
As time continued to move forward, some people accomplished all they set out to and more. And others started strong but then, with everything else that is going on, drifted back to old habits and lost their motivation.
The latter of the above scenarios is where we need to be careful in our thinking. As we turn to a healthier environment, thoughts of failure enter our minds and paralyze even the most optimistic person. You look out your window and see a neighbor running her silent marathon and getting better every day. Your best friend has mastered another language and still manages to tackle daily tasks.
When we put this type of stress on ourselves, it can cause us to retreat, and instead of making things better, we become complacent and more falls through the cracks. That’s OK. Between New Year’s and COVID resolutions, we pigeonhole ourselves by allowing resolutions to dictate our course of action. When we push ourselves when we’re not ready, we end up “failing” at what we’re trying to accomplish. For example, fitness centers sign up more new members in January and then fall off in February.
It’s all OK. When it’s the right time, and most importantly, don’t compare yourself to others.
Everyone has their time clock, and just because we’re headed into the new normal and back to in-person interactions, don’t beat yourself up.
Tomorrow will always come, and there is no right or wrong time to jumpstart whatever goal you are ready to undertake.
If you scroll through social media and notice that others accomplish what seems like a lot, don’t feel defeated. And better yet, refrain from visiting those platforms. This unprecedented time in history was unexpected, and there are no right/wrong behaviors when it comes to expanding your horizons. Take a step back and feel alive, and don’t judge yourself or others. If asked what you did during your time off in COVID, simply say, I learned a lot about myself and so happy to be alive.
In summary, create your own time for resolutions and set REALISTIC goals to give you a better chance of success.