Are you a bit like me? During this Lockdown it has sometimes felt like I just want to curl up at the bottom of my dark cupboard. I’ve felt lonely – I’ve missed the hugs, the warmth, and the loving presence of my family and friends. I’ve longed for time just to sit and chat; or go for a walk with real, living bodies. Connecting on Zoom just didn’t seem to do it anymore!
Or maybe you were beginning to feel like my brother. He’s become more argumentative; shouting and finding fault with his family. It’s just not like him. I know he really wanted to break out and be free to get back to his gym and his shut down business.
Yes, the Government has announced some limited easing of Lockdown – but we’ll still be living with restrictions for some time into the future. There is a resource to help us keep sane and make sure we don’t cause harm to those with whom we live. It is to consciously build an empowering attitude – a ‘GLAD’ response to daily life. Sure, it is not that easy; it does take work, practice and perseverance. But it made a big difference for me. It begins by purposefully seeking out the many things for which you can still be grateful – even in Lockdown. Right – this might sound too simple to be true – but let me explain further.
‘Attitude’ can be a spontaneous reaction, but it can also be a choice. And its impact can be very powerful. We all know someone in whose presence we just feel that little bit better – where we feel uplifted. And yes, we probably also know that feeling when someone with a negative attitude approaches where we wish we could just be somewhere else. Attitudes express the underlying emotional response to life’s situations. And emotions are energetic responses to the things and situations on which we focus. That’s the psychological energy, the feelings, that ‘drives’ our action. So we say: “Emotion is Energy seeking Purpose.”
A positive attitude is typically shown by someone who focuses on the good. That’s where the underlying emotion results in a ‘GLAD’ response. Such a person will notice the sun breaking through the clouds, or when you’ve changed your hairstyle. They’ll recognise and comment when you have done something nice. They exemplify the word ‘appreciation’.
But that does not mean they continually live in cloud-cuckoo-land. Of course, with the challenges of the pandemic, they also experience concern and anxiety, like you and I. Of course, with the restrictions of lockdown, they can experience the same frustrations as anyone else. And of course, with the disruption of future plans, they will experience the disappointment of lost opportunity, and sadly, the tragic grief of the loss of a loved one.
But they bounce back – that’s called resilience. And they are able to do that because they have practiced and learned to purposefully shift their attention again to the good.
You see when you practice GLAD, you start with APPRECIATION. And this help to generate positive expectation for the future – you can be the agent of even more good stuff happening.
And with that POSITIVE EXPECTATION of your own efforts, your sense of SELF-CONFIDENCE improves.
And as that happens so does your experience of GOOD RELATIONSHIP.
Now you become that very person with whom others might feel a little better – feel uplifted. And guess what – the practice of living in GLAD brings a double bonus: it not only makes your world a happier place – it also boosts your immune system to protect your health and wellbeing.