There hasn’t been a client call over the last several months that haven’t at some stage addressed the benefits (silver lining) of the Covid-19 lockdown. Sure, it could be an attempt to play down the bigger negative elements, burying their head in the sand, a distraction from the real issues at play…
There are some that are universally valid; such as a newfound appreciation for working from home, finding solace in a slower pace of life, working closely with community members to achieve a common goal and the list goes on.
A silver lining is a sign of hope or a positive aspect in an otherwise negative situation. The phrase is often seen as part of the proverb; Every cloud has a silver lining, meaning that there's hope or something good to be found in every bad situation.
These silver linings demonstrate our instinctual motive to survive, not as our ancestors once knew but played down, boxed and connected to our times; seeking a sense of community, closeness with peers, gratitude and an internal belief that the pandemic may spur positive social change for a global audience (hard writing this considering what is happening in Afghanistan right now August 2021)
So, what has been said?
The value and importance in spending quality time with loved ones.
Without doubt the one that has been mentioned more times and by all. Spending time with family builds confidence for all of its members. Parents can teach children to build self-esteem through specific skills such as problem solving and communication. They can also model the ability to love self without degrading others.
Life slowing down.
Having real-time to do nothing, guilt free, and the headspace to take up low-stakes hobbies just for fun, as in caring more about enjoyment than talent. Cooking, learning how to play an instrument, gardening are all things that have been mentioned – ultimately in my own words “test driving retirement”. Knowing what makes you happy is something that few rarely experience since the freedom and joys of adolescent playground games.
I’ve had the ability to test drive retirement, understanding what I do and do not want to manifest into my future.
Community coming together.
People reaching out to friends and family to make sure they are okay, physically and emotionally. Helping vulnerable neighbours, saying hello (at a safe distance) in the street to people you’d have normally missed, respecting the rules, and the importance of staying civil and the list goes on. Accepting that you are only part of the puzzle and at times you, yourself can be missed and neglected just as the next person.
Feeling gratitude for what you have.
Noticing the things that you once took for granted, including your health and fitness. This is one that has been a topic close to the top. Vulnerability is something few address and embrace – check out my audiobook on the topic here: https://amzn.to/2YbgvkN
Benefits of working from home.
I don’t need to go into detail here but personally the benefit of being able to save around 3hrs commuting 3 times per week is certainly something that I have enjoyed, not only has it saved money but also enabled me to spend an additional 9hrs of my week catching up on sleep, spending time with the dogs and the children. All positive in my book!
Embrace the silver lining but avoid taking your eye off the game.
Understanding the silver linings that have given people hope, strength, and solace can inform efforts to support individual and collective recovery from the psychological and emotional challenges of the pandemic, it is important to avoid slipping too far the other way.
You cannot deny, many systems of the past have supported much of our own personal and professional growth, as we know it today, YES, times of reflection are key to our own mental and physical wellbeing, however too much change can be catastrophic.
If you need some help getting back to normal then book a one to one therapy session with me Benjamin Bonetti. More details can be found on the booking page.
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