The What Ifs That Could Change the Way You View a Crisis

It very much matters how you respond to this crisis. It requires poise and perspective and perseverance. It’s important to maintain and empowered mindset.

What if no one is coming to rescue you because you are supposed to be saving them?

What if instead of looking for inspiration, people are looking to you to inspire them?

What if instead of waiting for someone to be brave enough to act in the face of their fear, you dared to move, helping others see it is safe to do so?

What if instead of focusing on your own challenges, you turned your attention to helping others with their problems, ones that may be even greater than yours?

What if, instead of waiting for things to get better, you did the work to make things better where you are now?

What if instead of sharing the bad news you see on television, the internet, and social media, you share the good and positive things that are happening all around you?

What if instead of waiting for a better future to show up, you started taking actions to make that future bigger, bolder, and brighter through the steps you take today?

What if instead of focusing on what you can’t control, you directed all of your energy towards what is within your control?

What would change for you if you were to change your attitude from negative and pessimistic to positive and optimistic?

What if instead of rejecting the adversity that has been thrust upon you, you accepted it and allowed it to shape you, making you something more than you were before you faced it?

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When confronted by monumental events beyond your control, you still retain the power to choose how you respond. You always get to determine how you interpret the events you experience, deciding what they mean to you. You get to determine if an event is an ending or a beginning. You get to choose whether it is a starting line or the finish line.

Like any experience, it’s purpose and meaning are going to be determined by your attitude and your actions, both of which you can choose, even if it isn’t easy to maintain them. If the lens you see things through is already biased towards the negative, any adverse event will appear even more devastating and detrimental. A lens that is positive, optimistic, and future-oriented will remove much of the power of negative events, providing you with a sense of hope and possibility.

What you believe is going to determine your actions. It is either going to be a call to action or a justification to withdraw. You are going to act in your interest and the interest of others, or you are going to hunker down and try to wait it out. You are going to call on your courage or allow your fears to prevent you from doing what you can do now to make things better.

If you do nothing, a crisis will have no positive outcome. If you decide to do what you can, you create the possibility of creating positive results to offset some of the negative.

alt text image of a square with a sad face and a square with a happy face

No one wishes for adverse events as an opportunity to grow. But those who use them as a chance to reimagine things, to call on their initiative and their resourcefulness as motivation, end up stronger on the other side. Those who do nothing are shaped only by their perception of loss, lost time, lost opportunities, and lost certainty as to the way things are supposed to be.

None of what is written here is easy. There are very few things that make a real difference that are easy, least of all what you must do when you find yourself facing the type of monumental challenge we face now. You have to make a concerted effort to do all the things necessary to position yourself to acquire and maintain this mindset for as long as necessary.

Do your best; recognizing this is a long game, but not one without an ending we are barreling towards now. Go easy on yourself when negativity overtakes you and call for a do-over when you need one. If you are going to be changed by this experience, be intentional in how you decide to allow it to change you.

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