Staying Sane During Isolation

So by now the reality of the situation has set in for most of us and the harsh reality that life as we knew it only a few weeks ago is now over, movements are restricted and monitored, and we are not even being given any indication when this may or may not end, people are losing their jobs already as an economy largely built on debt and the management thereof fails almost instantly the “just in time”repayment money fails to appear.

It would be easy to fall into depression, in fact that is one of the things that is worrying governments around the world, people will take longer to recover from the effects of having their lives taken out from underneath them slower than the world will take to beat Covid-19.

The important thing to remember at this time is that although this seems insurmountable it is not, it literally is just a matter of time, and frankly the conspiracy theorists out there claiming that governments have a cure but aren’t letting on are dreaming, there is no government anywhere in the world that would allow the demise of millions of registered tax payers if they could help it.

After the Boxset

Initially I think the majority of people will turn to Netflix (and other streaming platforms) with time on their hands, but once you have binge re-watched your favorite series what then, twiddle your thumbs? the reaction that the world had to being told they should stay in doors was almost completely uniform.

Majority of people had to get out and see other people, not because they suddenly had the desire to be social but because they were frightened about losing the ability to do something.

Our minds need stimulation and leisure activities are designed to give us a break from the stress and planning of normal daily modern life, if you think about what you would normally do in a typical day it is quite a long list, juggling work, home, activities, money, emails, social media, planning holidays, dealing with children and their problems, worrying about children the list is endless.

But these worries are starting to diminish we are not going out as much, balancing all the activities that we would normally do in a day and a night aren’t there any more and our brains are struggling to slow down, this is where the boredom and the frustration comes in.

As we become bored we become aware of the lack of stimulation, and that frustrates us more, the lack of stimulation is the biggest change we can go through at this time because people with a normal active life are, if anything, over stimulated, modern life has dictated that we become 24hr people and suddenly we have been thrust back into a time long gone where there is very little to do and a lot of time to think about things.

But it doesn’t have to be this way, you do not have to succumb to the boredom and ultimately the cabin fever, all you need to do is find a source of stimulation, a path of mental and physical occupation that means you are expanding your mind, believe me it will make that boxset even sweeter in the evening if you have been busy all day.

My Tips to Stay Sane in this Insanity

  1. Start a course online, literally pick a subject and start to learn it, if ever you needed the time to learn a new skill this is the perfect excuse.
  2. Spend time with your family (in your household of course) you would be amazed how little you know about each other really, as modern life forces the “ships passing in the night” on all of us.
  3. Make good use of Social Media, I hate it personally but not because of itself but rather the applications that humans find for it, usually the instrument of either hate or bullying or pornography, instead we now have the opportunity to use it for face to face communication, and to catch up with people you possibly haven’t had time to before.
  4. Read, reading is by far and way the easiest way to lose some hours while engaging your mind, read fiction and your brain will conjure images and emotions as well as improving skills that can be useful for education purposes, most of us fall out of the habit and struggle when we pick up educational books, not because of the subject matter but because we are out of practice with reading.
  5. Enjoy the time together, partners, children and pets are awesome we rarely (in most cases) get the opportunity to really enjoy time as it is always so finite but now the rushing around is out of the way you can truly enjoy the time together.

I hope this helps to at least give confidence that the way people are feeling is normal, and that there are ways to ride this thing out, it will be (and is being) a very challenging time for the world, but we will get through it, and who knows, with a helping of luck come out the other side a bit better connected and with a better prospective on the life we were living and how important some of the priorities we had were.

Another Casualty of Human Nature – Every Man and Woman for Themselves.

As this continues we have started to see (and I suspect will continue to see) the true nature of mankind, the underlying motivation in any society would appear to be one of greed, and at a time like this it seems incredulous to me that as a race we appear to still be looking out for ourselves, companies rushing to find ways around the restricted opening, looking to still sell as much as they can to a population that have nowhere else to go right now, here’s the thing, if there is nobody left to spend it then money is wallpaper and nothing else! you see money and wealth are not mutually exclusive, although we are taught this through countless morons on social media, making money from using whatever they think they can sell, and of course the powers that be want us to equate the two as equal as well as it serves their purpose, after all if you have lots of money then you are wealthy right? no, No and F**K NO,

It is not only perfectly possible to have money and be broke as well as have no money and be wealthy and in fact in most cases that is the status quo, think I am talking rubbish? think about it, how many people living lavish lifestyles actually have money? the vast majority of them are living with eye watering debt and yet they live lives of personal Jets, Yachts, huge houses and extravagant vacations either to elite destinations or in some cases destinations they own, and the reality of it, none of it is theirs, they have become what the Mafia refer to as “A good earner” that is to say their debts are so huge that they never repay a single cent or penny of the original sum, simply the interest they have become essentially an investment by the bank and a dividend payment at the end of each month, if they screw up then they lose all the loaned goods and lifestyle and the bank moves onto the next entrepreneur.

During this time there will be job cuts, people will lose their livelihoods due to the chaos that is going on around us, and they will find it difficult if not impossible to find another one in a short space of time, after all they can’t even leave the house to attend an interview!

Stuck in a mountain of debt this is where the lesson will be learned that human nature is to cut loose anything that is no longer profitable and ignore it till it goes away.

What then ?

Well the first instinct is the emotional response that sends most people into a pit of either saturated fat or alcohol self pity, but there is nothing to stop you from taking action and becoming the top of the pile, hell if you make enough noise the people that turned their backs on you will come running again you’ll see, whatever you did, whatever your shape of cog within the machine of the larger organisation is your way to work yourself back up the ladder, you can start a business, because now you have nothing to lose, if you are already in debt and you have been cut loose by a company trying to save money in this time when we have a global need for stability then you will eventually lose what you have anyway, so if all is lost then why not gamble what you don’t have on a future a million times as bright as the one you have now?

Finally….

I want to wish everybody around the world the best of luck with this because that is what we are going to need, my whole point is that although your landscape may be changing every day and seeming to just get darker, with the right motivation you can turn the tables on the establishment and secure your own seat at the top, there is shameless display of profit over human life evident in most quarters of the globe, maybe your empire will change that and value your fellow human.

Recognise and break the cycle of destructive self prophecy.

Regardless of how bizarre a theory sounds (and these are all theories at best psuedo science at worst) the classification of a theory changes with the amount of people that believe it to be correct, a theory becomes and idea, and idea becomes an inspiration, inspiration becomes research and research leads to documentation which then becomes widely regarded as fact, and one such theory is self-fulfilling prophecy, or our ability to somehow place a barrier to a goal or state of being based on our constant denial of our ability to achieve.

Discussion

I love bodybuilding, I really do, it has been part of my life now for 31 years, but I have always had my own personal doubts as to my ability to compete so I never did, I simply carried on training but never even tried to compete or diet down for that matter, why? because I had already decided that I would not be able to, now at the risk of sounding like I am trying to brag (which I assure you I am not) a quick idea of what I did achieve is, I had 38 inch thighs, a 32 inch waist and was rapidly growing out of 56 inch chest jackets, so at the tender age of 19 I was actually doing quite well, so why didn’t I compete ? well it is a lot of extra work and pain, lifting big weights when you have lots of calories and the right amount of protein and supplements going in is easy but the same tasks dieted down not so much, and after all I was not good enough so why bother?

Progress in any form of life is normally facilitated by the perseverance or person through the application of pain or discomfort, for every goal there is a sacrifice and we weigh up the benefits of an action against the potential cost every day in a mostly sub conscious state.

Method

Realisation of the reasons for failure is the key, you can take a person who feels they cannot do something and put them in a position where they have either no choice or to not do it would cost more than to participate and they can find that extra something deep inside and complete the task, moreover you generally find that they then go on to repeat the task in the future without concern and can become quite good at it or very comfortable with the feeling, that is what we are trying to achieve in our daily lives, and the initial key is to understand why the “self-fulfilling prophecy” is so detrimental and what we must do to get around it.

I it simply because in that moment we made a decision, a decision based on the pain level we were feeling and the possibility of relieving it by carrying out an action that was unpleasant or counter intuitive to our beliefs or fears but nevertheless it was the better option, what we lack in our daily lives is the impetus to make the decision, just as people live with failing eyesight through the ageing process until it gets so bad that they have to go to the opticians we adapt to the pain and stress of our lives as it is applied gradually from birth, what we need to do is recognise that the limits we set are indeed set by us and the same delivery of dialogue that oppresses and controls us , if altered to a positive message will free us from not only the bonds of society but from the boundaries we set ourselves through lack of belief in our own ability.

Begin by taking each situation you find yourself in that is painful or stressful and reinforce to yourself that you do not deserve it, you deserve a better life, and it is within your power to attain the solution and to live that better life, conversely when enjoying yourself actively remind yourself that you do deserve this and that you have worked for that moment of calm or day in the sun, by doing this we change any negative self fulfilling prophecy and turn it into a positive and through practice and action derived from personal reinforcement of a positive message and a belief that you deserve a better life you will change your actions to suit your goals.

Conclusion

I believe, truly believe that while we are a product of upbringing and environment we also have the ability to change our lives for whatever we decide we deserve or we should be doing, modern life has a need to keep people within boxes and limitations in order to prop up the financial culture of debt and the insecurity in social circles that feeds that debt culture, life is far to short to remain in a planetary gear in the corporate debt machine, it isn’t fair and the fact is that although a level Utopian playing field would be nice, we passed the time to make that change at the beginning of civilisation, now is the time to fight for the happiness and success of yourself and your loved ones by living your best life.

Helpful Links

Somebody hurt you? don’t feel down use it as a springboard to success

Most of us have been there, stuck at the back end of a failed relationship or social situations that don’t go right, employers that don’t value you, and it starts to feel like there is no way out, things will never change and you get depressed.

It is easy at these times to start self deprecating behaviours, in desperation from a break from the pain or pressure we turn to drink, drugs, eat more or less, anything to give us control of a situation or remove the feeling even if for a brief moment.

Discussion

During a fight or an argument I have never seen somebody begin punching themselves or start to shout down their own opinions, this is became we are fighting for something, the imposition of our will over another, or control of a situation from somebody who was out to harm us, this is because it would be counter intuitive to do so as harming yourself will not win the situation over,

So why do we allow ourselves to act that way when faced with stress and pressure of life or say the end of a relationship ?

There is no better revenge than being in shape and successful, this was said to me quite some time ago now, and there has been many anecdotal evidence of it in my life and I am sure that there has been in yours if you think it through.

Conclusion

Any kind of detrimental action is only going to exacerbate things more and lead you to feeling worse, you should look to improve your life and focus on the positives no matter how difficult they are to find, build on them and create a different reality than the one you are not happy with, people will act in a way they think is acceptable both in interpersonal matters and official, nearly all situations can be controlled if we take ownership of it and act in our own best interest, sometimes it is time to be selfish.

Dealing with Despair

The mind is a funny thing and is far more complicated than we will ever know (at the very least in my lifetime) and occasionally it can seem to be working against us, plans that are carefully laid are doubted and things we decide are true and right are questioned, and this effect is further magnified the longer our plans take to come into fruition, one of the many problems with this is that it can distract us, suddenly we start looking for alternatives to the plans we have laid, and start re-examining facts and figures that previously we were sure of.

Dealing with this is tricky, we must learn to understand the difference between doubt and intuition, many times in your life so far you will have felt that something is either good or bad in an instant, it is that innate ability that we all have, however it’s brutal honest nature often gets it ignored in favour of a path that is more to our liking, I personally have a fascination with intuition, precognition and the undeveloped abilities of the mind in general, but I will expand that later.

Doubt on the other hand tends to be the re-evaluation of known facts in the absence of any additional information, we let our minds wander in quiet times and inevitably you will start to concentrate on subjects that are of paramount importance.

The only way to deal with this is to actively fight against it and remember to do this with some considerable effort, years can be wasted allowing negative thoughts and emotions to slow us down stop us from progressing.

As a quick example of how I have learnt to deal with the darker moments, have a look at the three points below.

What am I worried about?

What are you worried about, I mean that literally, stop and ask yourself, “So what is the problem?” and list (on paper if it is easier for you to visualise) what exactly it is that is worrying you, this can be anything and you can be brutally honest with yourself at this point, no matter how you think your fears would be received by anybody else write them down, the only person reading it will be you.

Evaluate your worries

With that done to be honest you may feel slightly worse, that would be a normal response to a sudden listing of everything that is worrying us, but this is where you have to really fight, and fight as if your life depends on it, because allowing these negative internal influences can literally rob you of portions of your life, and that isn’t right even if it is you that’s doing it,

Look at each one and consider it carefully, what are the chances of it happening? what would the outcome be if it did happen? is there any mitigating action that can be taken? and one I personally use, is this happening right now? if not you can relax instantly because if it is not happening now then you have time to prepare and be ready for it even if the answers to the first questions aren’t ideal.

Crowd out the negative with positive

Now start to focus on the answers to your worries as identified by you, these are the positive actions you can take that make the worries that are plaguing you worthless, concentrating on these you can see that as each worry or problem is negated it will just diminish until it no longer exists, in fact as an exercise it may well be that the additional focus on the answers to the worries/problems actually brings stronger and more productive answers allowing you to solve problems quicker.

Depression

Depression is a serious matter however and if you start to feel that no matter what you do to cope you just can’t lift yourself out of this spiral, you should contact one of the various organisations that are there to help, starting with your GP / Doctor, we all deserve the best chance at life but unfortunately society can be cruel, peer groups, governments and their agencies, finance companies, social media can and will all take their toll, and for the most part the people involved don’t even give enough thought to their victims to consider the impact of their actions, so at least it is not personal, what you have to do is reach out to the other side of society, there is many good people around that want to help, some for money sure, but others literally because they want to help, if you ask they will answer, don’t let yourself become another statistic of the system.

Main Photo by Nathan Cowley from Pexels