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Eight Ways to Best Navigate Change and Develop Emotional Resilience During these Uncertain Times

By Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino, Beth Caldwell & Kris Fuller

Editor's Note:

Listen live to Elizabeth, Beth and Kris on Saturday, March 21 at 1pm eastern by calling us at 646-787-8537 or this link.

Free audio download here: or wherever your download your favorite podcast. During the show, we also were joined by Dr. Lynne Chelli of Endicott College.

Navigating the unknown isn’t new. Generally speaking, we’re all constantly navigating the unknown as people, whether it is a new job or class we take, new baby we bring home and more. We’re constantly maneuvering through change and we're looking for the best road to take.

Just last month, Elizabeth and her husband were in California toodling around wine country and then were in North Carolina for college baseball. Suddenly, the next week they were seeing the news heat up, getting kids from closed colleges, changing work meetings, conferences and schedules and more. The year prior her father passed away and mother had surgery.

In other cases, Kris Fuller just received news that her husband Ben has stage 4 colon cancer. (Fuller Cancer Support)

2019 was a very tough year for Beth Caldwell and her family. Her infant nephew died tragically on July 1st due to a physician's mistake. The family experienced five additional deaths over the next 4 months, stretching their resiliency to the absolute limits.

So, the Coronavirus, for many, has added another layer of even more unexpected stress, anxiety and unknown.

Emotions, and in particular, anxiety and stress levels, are through the roof right now as we navigate through 2020 and the novel Coronavirus. So very often change we take on is like a personal quest, such as getting in better shape or changing jobs, however, current events are having us react and respond both individually and collectively in new and different ways.

During these times of change, what are you percolating into the world?

Here are eight tips we have for developing emotional resilience to help navigate stressful situations:

Practice pausing. In this case, we may need to pause for humanity. Life has issued a pause for many of us and it is important to perhaps build your energy as you may find yourself needing it. A pause means you allow yourself to take a break, take moments and recharge. Remember, a pause may be big or small.

Understand your leadership style - You may be in a situation where your job is to calm others who may not be so calm. How stressed and tested you are will come out in a variety of ways, so it is important to be mindful in these situations. As Beth Caldwell reminds us in her book, Women, LEAD!, the way we handle a crisis is modeled by those around us. Most people have never faced a threat this extensive. They feel uncertain and afraid. Recognize that they need compassion and empathy as much as direction. It's critically important right now that you stay grounded and use your leadership skills to rally others toward a sense of combined purpose rather than furthering the isolation they are already experiencing.

Understand how changes are made - Generally, we are in the driver's seat with change. It's a healthier style of life or job change and we choose it. In many cases, though change is not something we've chosen. Many people currently already have an issue playing in the background, such as an underlying condition or financial crisis already brewing. Add in the Coronavirus and now suddenly multiple issues may be playing out. The virus may have even caused a change you didn't want, such as a job loss for example. We process through the 9 steps of change written in Percolate - Let Your Best Self Filter Through regularly. In this case, with Point 1- Awareness – We’re probably all plenty aware of the virus, however most of us will process fluidly though points 1-9 of how we make change and change the order of the steps and revisit them in a variety of ways. How we all process change right now matters in the way we behave and lead. Whatever changes you are faced with it can be important to find your footing in what matters to you most.

Connect and Collaborate. Our usual lives are very disrupted right now. Many of the things we once did have changed. It is possible to have that sense of community and collaboration in other ways. Time to get creative. From virtual classrooms to more virtual meetings and more, there are so many great creative and helpful examples on social media platforms, ideas to support one another, to share truths and share joy as well. We write this next line with the understanding that things might not be very funny where you are. If you are a person who uses humor to cope: Even memes are finding their way in this environment. We use shared humor to make it through.

Rest, Relax and Routine. It's important to establish a routine of some kind, especially if you have children. I know, for example, our college kids are completely thrown off their routine. As are working parents, children in preschools - high school and beyond. We all must find a new normal right now and are called upon and calling upon each other to adjust with your routine to include rest, relaxation and routine. Please remember to be kind to yourself and practice self-care. Tired parents cannot teach tired kids, so it's ok if you just love them through it. Allow movies, forts and naps to be ok. Allow yourself to be lower in productivity, if needed.... remember... YOU are important too. Take care of you.

Reframe the situation with gratitude. This is a tough one, especially as we see so many things changing all at once, we’re all doing our best to process extreme changes that include even business closures, illness, and worse. It is possible to have the worst of circumstances and seek out positive energy to change your approach to situations. You might need to practice this line of thinking as it may not come naturally. To start we strongly recommend journaling or blogging.Here is a journal exercise: How can we be grateful in these moments? Please think about this question for yourself and consider starting a specific gratitude journal for these moments or expand on what you have written already.

Be Patient with Yourself and Others. People's response in crisis varies from person to person and moment to moment. Please be patient with yourself and others. We're all in new territory together and please practice kindness, compassion, and understanding in our moments. Especially if you are confined to your home with others. Temper disturbances.

Practice self-care. This is a moment where it is important to be as healthy as you can be, in case you fall ill especially. If you are not in your best physical or emotional health, it might be a moment where you consider using the pause created by this situation to implement better self-care. Physical and emotional well-being are carefully intertwined, so both could be addressed. We see great videos of people exercising in their homes, taking walks and reminding us all to eat as best we can in these moments. The same holds for your emotional well-being. You might even be feeling creative. is it a dance party in the living room with the cat? A bake off with the kids? Put a challenge out to others in your world.

Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino

Elizabeth Hamilton Guarino is one of America's most trusted mindset, leadership, and personal & corporate development consultants. As the Founder and CEO of Best Ever You and Compliance4, Elizabeth has helped thousands around the globe be their best and achieve world-class excellence. Elizabeth is the author of PERCOLATE - Let Your Best Self Filter Through and contributor to A Lesson for every Child: Learning About Food Allergies

Beth Caldwell

Beth Caldwell is the author of more than ten books on leadership, inspiration, and personal development. She believes that women CAN do it all, just not at the same time. She is the founder and creator of the SHIFT Program and Leadership Academy for Women. She is the former host of the popular WebTV Show Smart Leadership and currently hosts a motivational weekly broadcast called Monday Morning Mastermind.Women's Leadership Academy

Kris Fuller

Kris Fuller is keynote speaker, business coach, and event planner, Kris is known for her mindset philosophies and meticulous planning. Kris is an author with Waldorf Publishing and the CEO of Your Life Sparkles. Kris is a graduate of the University of Alberta (Bachelor of Education), University of Sedona (Bachelor of Metaphysics) and certification from the Palouse Center for Mindfulness. She also holds a Performance Diploma from Red Deer College and Gifted Mind Series from Oxford Brookes University in the UK.


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