I’ve been thinking about the stresses and pressures we are all carrying these days and attempting to focus on the practical things that help promote mental and spiritual health. How do you live normal when life is not normal?
Whether you are a church leader, a parent leading your family, or leading in the business arena, we all need to lean into what helps us think and live healthily so we can better care for and lead others.
This does not dismiss…
1) The reality of the situation
There’s no question that devastating things are happening in our world, and COVID-19 is at the top of the list right now.
My suggestions do not pretend to make big problems magically disappear, but they do help us keep leading with a positive spirit.
2) The need to be vigilant
The vast majority of our time and attention is needed to handle what is not normal in our midst.
However, we must remain strong, human, connected, and reminded of the little things, the important things that make solving the big problems worthwhile.
3) The need for our focus to be on the hope of Christ
Jesus is and has always been the one who promises to help us with what we cannot solve. He is the giver of wisdom to solve problems, strength to endure challenges, and hope in our ultimate destiny.
I’m offering some everyday things that really do help.
The calmer, poised, and at peace, you are personally, the better you can lead the people God has given you responsibility for.
10 ways to help you live more “normal”:
(What’s normal? I know… but each of us has a normal, our normal, and when it’s disrupted, we know it.)
- The goal is not for you to do all 10.
- Select the ones most helpful to you.
- Don’t let this be a task; let it be life-giving.
1) Establish a new routine.
We are creatures of habit, and routine is essential.
And a routine is different than a rut. A routine brings stability so we can remain healthy and more productive. A rut is when you are stuck, not growing, and not experiencing spiritual health.
Most of us have recently had our routines blown up. Some of you have kids at home, that will do it. You love your kids, but that’s a big routine breaker.
Then add the fact that perhaps all of you are home – all the time. Nothing further needs to be said.
- Modify your family systems.
- Make new plans.
- Set new routines.
I highly encourage you to organize and simplify.
That won’t solve all your problems, but it helps you lift your spirits.
And candidly, it will give you something where you can see immediate and tangible results. In a time when it feels like nothing is in your control, it will help your mental health and overall disposition.
2) Reach out to your friends.
You are probably in close touch with your friends and colleagues you connect with regularly.
I’m suggesting that you consider friends and colleagues that you haven’t talked with texted or messaged on social for a long time.
Reach out and check-in. Let them know you’re thinking about them. A text or any method is great. Marco Polo is a great app you can use.
Take a moment to pray for them and let them know you prayed.
Don’t make it a project, or a task on your to-do list, consider it a privilege to encourage someone today.
This will warm your heart and lift your frame of mind.
3) Take time to be quiet.
Time to be quiet is desperately needed by everyone, especially in times of fear and uncertainty.
My world is noisy, quiet is priceless to me. I will admit that if I get too much alone time or quiet, I will literally start looking for someone to talk to, but quiet reflection is essential for the well-being of your soul.
I’m not referring only or specifically to your “quiet time” or daily devotional, although you might prefer to combine them. But real quiet time. Just to “be still,” to think and reflect.
I have a cup or two of tea a day, and that is very centering and a good pause for reflection.
Don’t dismiss the impact of the little things, the simple things in your life.
What’s one or two little things or simple pleasures that help keep you grounded?