As the world is starting to open up to some normalcy post Covid-19 pandemic, are we ready for it?
Covid-19 has certainly taken a toll on our mental wellbeing. In fact, for many people, it can be hard to feel optimistic about the future. Enduring the long-term stress of the pandemic has left many of us feeling tired, stressed, overwhelmed and maybe even hopeless about the future and the way forward.
In order to help address this challenge, a reflective workbook, entitled “My story of the pandemic” has been created based on the science of Positive Psychology with the aim of helping people to reignite the spark of optimism.
This workbook can assist you personally and professionally as a coach and practitioner when working with your clients.
We all have our own story of life during the pandemic. Research suggests that reflecting on the experience, especially on what we have learned and the good things we have experienced, is important for our mental wellbeing. (Lambert et al., 2012; Guastella & Dadds, 2006; Low et al., 2006: King &Miner, 2000)
The well-known positive psychology concept of the “Broaden and Build” theory by Barbara Fredrickson (2004) proposes that experiencing positive emotions broadens our mindset and helps us to build our mental reserves. The cultivating and savoring of these positive emotions creates an upward spiral, making us feel more optimistic, hopeful and resilient about the future.
However, when we are experiencing stress, our brain and body are in a fight, flight, or freeze mode with the goal of surviving the immediate danger we are facing. The part of our brain that is responsible for problem-solving, planning, and long-term goals, has diminished activity as the focus is on survival.
While this reaction is very efficient in situations where we face immediate danger. However, when we are dealing with a prolonged situation like the pandemic, where we experience stress for a longer period of time, we need different tools to cope.
This is where we can apply the “Broaden and Build” theory because noticing, cultivating, and savoring the positive even in difficult and challenging situations, can relax us as well as help us to problem solve, and plan for the future,
Reflecting on good things during a stressful time might be easier said than done. The workbook has been created to help you get started on reflecting on your pandemic story, your learnings, and the good things, both personally and professionally that might have resulted from the pandemic. The reflective questions in the workbook are based on evidence-based research from Positive Psychology and can help guide you and others to spark a sense of optimism.
Click here to download the free workbook.