For Today News, : After the Pandemic - Reflecting on This?

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Showing posts with label After the Pandemic - Reflecting on This?. Show all posts
Showing posts with label After the Pandemic - Reflecting on This?. Show all posts

Thursday, May 14, 2020

After the Pandemic - Reflecting on This?

After the Pandemic - Reflecting on This?

After the pandemic, we will eventually get back to work, school, and elsewhere. But will there be a new normal? A new start? Differences that emerge following the enforced shutdown of usual business?

After the Pandemic - Reflecting on This?
After the pandemic,

For many of us, the lockdown means more stress cooped up at home, more worry about income, more frustration. Yet, perhaps there is also an opportunity arising from this pause in customary living.

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After all, we have had more time on our hands. More chance to think about things. To consider what really matters: what is actually of lasting importance.

So, I'm wondering whether this thinking is revealing anything to us. Any issues previously swept under the carpet?

How to do self-reflection now for after the pandemic:

This is now the chance to engage in some self-reflection, but how do we do this? The trouble is we can lose sight of the bigger picture of our life if we are caught up in the minutia of daily concerns.

How then do we step out of what usually pre-occupies us and hopefully gain a deeper perspective? Here are some tips on how to do this.

1. Make time for quietness alone.

Create a few minutes space away from others perhaps in the garden or take a walk and then deliberately engage in self-reflection.

2. Have a starting point

Start the period of thought with whatever is uppermost in your mind. We have to begin somewhere and this is a good a place as anywhere else. For instance, it could be a concern, a problem, a question, or just a vague feeling that beckons you.

3. Mull it over
Let the mind wander as it pleases from the starting point. Don't be frightened to allow it to take you places you haven't visited lately. Admittedly, it can feel uncomfortable if we have been exposed to harsh criticism for wandering off the straight and narrow. Just be mindful of the central issue where you set off.

4. Challenge excuses
Notices the excuses you come up with for not bothering. Challenge the idea that you have no opportunity for self-reflection. We can always make time for something if we drop something less important.

Likewise, question the notion it is a waste of time: just a pleasant escape. But is this true? I have found my mind can go exploring and make discoveries. That is to say, when contemplating my life, I find out why I want certain things and what I expect from them.

5. Consciously reflect on your goals in life
Ponder about what is really important to you. What you really value. Question your own motives and values. In other words, it might involve asking yourself 'who am I?', 'where do I come from?' and 'where am I going?'

6. Consider looking 'above self'
Spiritual philosopher Emanuel Swedenborg contrasts 'looking above self' with 'looking below self'.

'Looking above self' is considering what is good for one's family, friends, and community. Letting that inform what we try to do. Asking ourselves what matters most to us or where we want to take a stand. Probably, one's values will start to emerge as one chew over things in a calm rational way.

Looking 'below self' is the opposite. It is akin to closing the mind to a higher view. This egoism produces a defensive attitude. It prefers dishonest self-justification for doing things 'my way' rather than following any alternative path. This attitude comes from desiring only one's own welfare as an end in itself. Most importantly, this severely limits a higher meaning and purpose one can personally discover for one's life.

7. Remember any deeper sense of calling
We can sometimes forget a once experienced feeling of being called towards a new horizon. A glimpse of a higher plan for our lives - perhaps one we can kick-start after the pandemic. Have I been sidetracked or thrown off course by my inward personal struggles? Perhaps I have disillusionment, depression, regret, impatience, a sense of futility. This could be due to a lack of gratitude, insensitivity, or disloyalty shown to me.

According to Swedenborg much of this can be expected. Our spiritual progress is subject to a repeated cycle. Awakening, searching, finding hope and faith, struggling, and then re-awakening to meaning and purpose.

Summary about after the pandemic
To sum up, by using this current pause in the hectic pace of life we might discover new horizons, gain insights, or clarify goals. We can only each do what we can do. But hopefully will have a chance to put some of what we have learned into action after the pandemic.

As a clinical psychologist, Stephen Russell-Lacy has specialized in cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy, working for many years with adults suffering distress and disturbance.

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