VimStrong Part 1: How to Keep a Strong Mind in Times of Adversity
By Jason Bacigalupo
Vimocity Performance Coach
Over the past several weeks, day-to day life has changed for people across the globe. One major change for millions of people is transitioning from working at the office to working at home. Working in a new environment can bring up a lot of questions, such as, "how do I properly set up my desk and chair?" Not to mention, "how long is this pandemic going to last?"
During times of uncertainty and change, we can experience overwhelming stress and anxiety.
At Vimocity, our goal, whether you’re still in the field or working from home, is to walk with you as we find our way through this crisis. It is with that focus that we’re introducing a 3-part series called VimStrong. VimStrong has three pillars, each firmly reliant upon one another:
- Keep a Strong Mind
- Keep Your Body Moving
- Keep In Community
It’s truly striking just how intertwined these three concepts are.
KEEP A STRONG MIND
Today, in Part I of this series we are going to discuss the concept of a Strong Mind. When it comes to a strong mind, we’re really asking two critical questions whose answers underpin how we view and handle the world around us:
- What is our default mindset?
- When challenges arise, how do we respond?
First, in his renowned book The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People, Steven Covey introduced the concept of an abundance mindset. In short, those with an abundance mindset believe that there are enough resources and successes to share with others. They express gratitude for what they have.
Those with a scarcity mindset are constantly competing for resources and success. In their world, if someone else has “won”, then they have lost. For that person, what they currently have is not, and will never be, enough.
We can apply an abundance mindset to our current situation by looking first to those in poverty who have already set a great example. In the face of poverty those individuals show gratitude for the dollar that they do have, rather than worry about the dollar they don't have. They’re appreciative of their friends and relationships. They even look for opportunities to help others where and when they can.
Almost counterintuitively, those who approach challenging circumstances with an abundance mindset actually remove anxiety, frustration and anger from the equation. They’re not focused on buying every roll of toilet paper from the store. They take just what they need and move on, leaving some for others. Abundance unburdens the mind and provides a sense of calm when it’s most needed.
Is Adversity “Good”?
The manner in which we respond to hardship can play a major role in determining the outcome.
Responding to adversity with “good” affords Jocko the freedom to focus on the things that he controls, removes the distraction of the things he doesn’t and opens his mind to the possibilities that DO exist. After all, how many among us really get to skate through life free of adversity? If we’re drawing air, it comes with the territory.
In the current environment, there’s a great deal that we do not have the ability to control, and it is easy to find ourselves defaulting to fear, anxiety and frustration. However, when we are able to shift our mindset, and instead focus on what we can control (limited as it may be), it opens our eyes and mind to potential opportunities that improve our situation. It’s shining a flashlight into every dark corner in search of an answer, and continuing to work toward a solution regardless of what turns up.
Right now, how can you adapt to your current situation? What options exist for you that you haven’t considered. What actions will allow you to overcome barriers and make your situation today 1% better than it was yesterday? Where are your blindspots?
If you’re unsure about how to strengthen your resiliency, a concrete action step is to practice gratitude.
Reflecting on things you are grateful for has been shown in multiple studies to boost happiness and joy, build resilience and also improve overall health.
Take a few minutes every day to think about 3 things you are grateful for and write them down! By writing them, you unleash a powerful tool for maintaining focus, discipline and progress.
We're Here For You:
The Vimocity team is here for you. If you have questions regarding our programs, our content or anything related to Moving Better, Feeling Better and Living Better simply reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or better yet, join us on one of our live-streamed Daily Body Care sessions and ask your questions there!