Resilience in Lockdown by Anise Bullimore
What is lockdown like for you?
What are you finding challenging? Are there things helping you through? What are you learning?
We are going through radical change to our way of life right now. None of us are having the 2020 we’d hoped for. Now, more than ever, we need resilience.
You are probably hearing a lot about resilience right now. It can feel like a lot of pressure. A pressure to be positive throughout the pandemic; to keep going regardless of how we are feeling; to be able to instantly reinvent ourselves or turn this crisis into an opportunity.
In reality, we may be feeling weary, sad, angry or frustrated. We may be having good days and bad days. And that’s ok. It’s more than ok, in fact, it is expected and needed.
What is resilience?
Resilience isn’t our ability to be endlessly happy and never stop. It is our ability to adapt, take care of ourselves and keep our energy topped up.
Resilience is about recognising how we are feeling and being aware of what we need. It is being honest about what is going on and being kind to ourselves. Resilience is asking, how am I today? Really listening to the answer and responding practically and with compassion. It is taking time to acknowledge what we have lost and how that affects us, before we move on to what is next.
What raises our resilience levels?
The two top enablers of resilience are being present and managing our energy. You already know that when you are tired or hungry or too busy, you find it harder to deal with situations.
The key is in thinking about self-care and managing your energy as absolutely essential. It isn’t simply nice to have. It is the foundation of our resilience in lockdown. When we have resilience, we are able to respond to whatever happens with creativity and flexibility.
Take some time to just be still each day and notice how you are feeling. Do something each day that gives you energy and makes you feel good. It could be taking a nap, staring into space, going for a walk, baking bread, chatting to a family member or dancing round the living room. It’s whatever works for you.
Connecting with our secure bases is a simple activity to help build your resilience every day. Our secure bases are the people, places and activities that help us feel safe and inspired. Try answering these questions to think about how you can connect with secure bases:
What do you do where time flies?
You don’t have to be good at the activities, but they do make you feel good and increase your confidence. During lockdown you may not be able to do some of the activities that you love but you may have a chance to try something new or something you used to love when you were younger.
Where do you go that makes you feel relaxed and positive?
Perhaps there is a nearby park you can visit or a corner in your home that makes you feel good. As you can’t travel right now, you could also be reminded of places through pictures or objects.
Who makes you feel safe and inspired?
Sharing how you feel and laughing, ranting, playing or chatting is fundamental. Think about how you are connecting with people, especially family and friends, during lockdown. Perhaps there are new ways that you can connect with people such as writing letters or using Zoom calls. Through Othership and other online groups you can also connect to new people.
Want to know more about resilience? In honour of Mental Health Awareness Week, you are invited to take some time out to reflect on how you are and what lockdown is like for you by joining Anise on one of her ‘resilience walks.’
Find out more about Walk Coach Learn.
Anise is an experienced coach specialising in resilience and walking techniques. She can often be found wandering and working in London parks. Get in touch with Anise via firstname.lastname@example.org