So, we are still talking about the limiting beliefs that you might have that are making your self-made prison cell very small. This particular entry is fitting for the situation we are in right now!
When we are faced with an “event” which is usually more of a crisis at first, most of us immediately go into victim mode. We wallow in the agony of what has happened to us. OH! THE INJUSTICE OF IT ALL!!! How could this have happened to me? This event will end life as I know it. I will never be able to recover from this horrible thing that has happened to me. I don’t deserve this, yada, yada, yada.
Let me assure you, when this pandemic happened and we were given the order to shut down businesses, close down beaches, don’t drive unless absolutely necessary and shelter in place, I nearly lost my ever-living mind!!! I was screaming from the rooftops about how mad I was about this and that. I was spreading negativity to anyone who would listen to me. I was fighting with strangers on social media until I was having anxiety attacks multiple times every day. Finally, it got so bad that I felt like something snapped in my soul. I thought I was having an actual mental breakdown. I shut down for 2 whole days. I felt bad, I had a headache, I was exhausted and just needed a break. Then I figured out that I hadn’t had a mental breakdown, I had actually snapped back into sanity. It was at this point that I started to follow my own advise.
I turned off the TV, I stopped reading the negative posts on social media and I started filling my mind with positive things. It wasn’t that I was sticking my head in the sand. I wasn’t pretending the EVENT didn’t exist, I just came to the realization that I couldn’t change it no matter how mad I was or how much I screamed. It was beyond my control.
In order to get out of the box of our self imposed prison cell, we have to THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX – outside the walls of our belief that have bound us! When things feel the tightest is when we need to stretch the hardest. We can let the EVENT be the dead end or we can let the EVENT be the catalyst for us to forge a new path or look for a new trail. I’m really going to age myself here, but I think about “The Dukes of Hazard” and the General Lee. Those crazy country boys drove that car through some hair raising obstacles. In my minds eye I see them racing down a dusty, country road being chased by multiple cop cars. They are barely able to stay in front of them until they come to a white water stream. Instead of slamming on the brakes to stop at the edge of the stream, they pour on the gas and fly OVER the stream. All of the cop cars slam on their breaks and stop at the edge of the water. The General Lee clears the stream and the boys are free.
The very first thing we all have to do is either believe that we CAN overcome the EVENT or believe that we MUST overcome the EVENT. Sometimes desperation is the greatest motivator. After you believe you must overcome, its important to separate yourself from the event and look at it from outside. Look at it from an aerial view. See it for what it truly is instead of how it feels to you. What barriers does it put up? How has it changed the rules? Look at it objectively. Don’t get sucked into what everyone else is doing because most of the time they are going to be screaming and shaking their fists at the edge of the event. Don’t become part of the herd mentality. If you look at it from above you might see the barrier ends just beyond what people can see by standing right in front of it. Find the loop hole. Find the path less taken. Find a way to turn the event into your personal WIN. What small alterations could you make to what you do to get you around the event? How could you do it so that you still have a servant’s heart?
Restaurants have been hit hard by this current EVENT as have so many others, but let’s just look at restaurants right now. They had to close their facilities to dine-in customers BUT they could do carry out. Those who have done the best with the crisis are the ones who took carry out to a whole new level. They made romantic dinners, complete with candles for the table, available for carry-out. They played off the meals in a box we can now order that we prepare at home. They came up with “make it yourself” boxes so people could successfully cook really good food at home. Those who had a large social media following started making daily videos of how to prepare food then offered them the boxed meal that they could order. They made sure to post mouth watering entrees in to-go boxes every day on social media. They got the word out that they were alive and well. They gave the impression that they were thriving during hard times. Because they believed it and because they showed it to their customers, their customers continued to come.
Bar tenders could do a daily video or social media splash on “Drink of the Day” where they concoct and prepare a drink with specific instructions for their followers to make at home. Of course, they could always offer the drink for carry out if the viewers didn’t happen to have all the ingredients at home. The tag line would be something like, Just Add Ice! By making a personal connection to customers online, they build trust with their customers and the following grows.
If a retail store was closed down, the owner could create a daily video with their dog. They could show themselves opening boxes of new merchandise and showing it to a dog, or a baby, or a stuffed animal to emphasize that they were in quarantine but then turn to the camera like they just realized their customers could see into the store and offer the merchandise for online ordering.
The key is, no matter what event you are facing, there is always a more positive way to think about it and to deal with it. Sometimes we are faced with things more difficult than being shut down by a freak of nature. As a result, sometimes the way around the problem is harder. The truth still remains – what you think and what you believe about your EVENT will have either a positive or a negative impact on your EVENT. Enlarge your prison cell by thinking outside the box and seeing possibilities on the other side of the prison cell.