What all this uncertainty is doing to your brain

Uncategorized Jun 01, 2020

Things are uncertain right now. Ahhhh… possibly the understatement of the year!

The situation is literally changing from minute to minute and there's this compulsion to stay glued to news and social feeds to try and stay up with any implications for your work, your family or your health.

What's different about this compared to other tough times we've had in our lifetimes, is this uncertainty is literally assaulting us on all fronts.

We don't know if we're going to get sick and what this means…

We don't know how our company will fare or if our jobs are vulnerable…

We don't know if our kids will go to school, if we can socialise or even go outside…

As humans, we crave certainty. I don't mean we just like certainty. I mean it's one of our core human needs and for high achieving women like us it can be the number one thing that drives us.

We need to have this need met. Our desires are so primal that if we can't meet our needs in constructive ways, we'll settle for deconstructive ones.

So when our health, work, family, relationships and even personal movements aren't certain we cling to what we can control.

Enter… the great toilet paper shortage of 2020.

When the world is falling down around us, we want to know that we can lock ourselves in the bathroom and everything is exactly what it was, complete with plenty of toilet paper to meet our hearts desire.

Completely irrational that this one item should come to symbolise how great our need for certainty. But as herd animals once this trend took off there was no closing the gate.

So, what are your options when the world feels like it's crumbling at your feet? When you're a leader at work and your people are looking to you for reassurance, despite the fact that you're just in the dark as they are.

Here's what you can cling to.

  • You are driven, intelligent and adaptable. You wouldn't have come this far without these traits that will become even more important in the future. Be certain in your own ability to navigate whatever gets thrown your way
  • The media will always generate hype and focus on bad news. If you spend too much time drowning in their negativity it will seep into all areas of your life. So, know that hype is their job. Look past it. Read reputable sources. Minimise your time on social media and ensure you seek out heartwarming stories of hope and courage to give a balanced view.
  • People are people.Just because we may be distanced we don't have to be disconnected. Use this time to check in with old friends, family and remind them how important they are.
  • Change has always been inevitable.This pandemic doesn't change that the future has always been unknown, we've just lived under the illusion that we've had more control.

Above all else, you can be certain that you are human, and a good one at that.

 

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