Good often comes from bad circumstances. It’s hard to see or feel it as we’re living through the coronavirus pandemic, but past situations prove that we get through tough times as employees, customers, and families having human experiences. The key is reframing our thinking from “I have to” to “I get to” do something new. We need to be intentional about WHAT we focus on and HOW we use our time. I’ve been practicing what I preach.
Over the past week, I contacted dozens of friends from across the globe to hear about what they’re doing to be productive and content (despite feeling as if we’re going against gravity.) While listening to each story, I quickly realized that other people would benefit from ideas shared and that I have an opportunity to spread hope, inspiration, and happiness beyond my own home. If I could possibly make a difference in the world by connecting people through my writing, then I’ve achieved a higher purpose. And, that keeps me smiling.
Let’s talk about HUMAN EXPERIENCES. Please note:
- All views expressed are personal perspectives and do not reflect the opinions of or imply the endorsement of employers or other organizations. Each person has approved my quoting them from our dialogue.
- There are more fantastic stories people have shared since posting this article. I plan to continue collecting and adding to my website.
What People Are Doing in the USA:
- Martin E. P. Seligman, Ph.D: Pennsylvania: (Pioneer of Positive Psychology): “I’m helping people refocus their minds through simple exercises i.e. “Put It in Perspective,” which starts by conjuring the worst-case scenario, as minds tend to do first, then move to the best-case scenario and finish with the most likely scenario. The idea is to redirect thoughts from irrational to rational. When not working, I’m playing bridge online.” (Stacy’s note: View all his famous books on Amazon).
- Andy Proctor in Utah. “My formula for staying content is going out into nature. The earth is doing just fine even if people are panicking. Birds still sing. Plants grow. Sunsets are still stunningly beautiful and the mountains are still majestic. As I’m in nature, my worries seem to lessen and I feel optimism for the near and distant future. To start the workday, I’ve been doing exercise with employees called Loving-Kindness Meditation, which is known to boost relaxation and neurotransmitters like oxytocin to help the immune system. I’m also thinking about my late grandmother who lived to be 100. She went through countless “major world crises” like these where the World thought it was coming to an end. Just remembering that she lived through all those things helps me calm down.” (Stacy’s Note: Listen to our podcast together about happiness in life & work)
- Shep Hyken in Missouri: “I’m an optimistic guy. Not diminishing the danger and impact of the coronavirus crisis but I won’t let it get me down. With plenty of clients canceling and postponing events, I can complain but rather choose to see opportunities instead. I’m spending more time writing, researching, reflecting on what’s really important, spending time with my wife. playing guitar and practicing card tricks. I’m a believer of the old saying, “This too shall pass!” (Stacy’s note: Check out my CX episode on Shep’s radio show. And, read Shep’s books. It will be time well spent.)
- Joe Pine in Minnesota: “I’m spending much time with my wife. We’re reading a lot and walking on the beach at sunset while in Hawaii (at the time of communicating with Stacy). It’s been a wonderful experience. Heading home and working on new ideas and writing.” (Stacy’s Note: Read Joe’s best selling books like The Experience Economy).
What People Are Doing in Other Countries:
- Ben Motteram in Australia: “I’m staying active. Setting up a makeshift gym, walking in neighborhoods, starting a 2000 piece jigsaw puzzle. Reading & Writing.
- Nima Bahadori in Singapore: “I’m enjoying playing Chess with my son. Also, planning to start a YouTube channel. We’re learning about video editing, digital media & digital marketing. I’m experimenting with how to conduct online brainstorming sessions. It’s amazing how resilient & innovative we are when faced with adversity.”
- Anna Choi in Hong Kong: “I’m spending time on MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses) and joining webinars which I normally don’t have time for. Also talking to my friends by phone versus texting to have meaningful social interaction.”
- Jost Bendel in Germany + working in Switzerland: “My family has a plan of what and when we do things. During the morning, the focus is on school. Bavarian schools have a media they open for all pupils with respective learning videos. We have also a family fitness calendar. My son now improves my skills in playing hockey 1:1 (Just survived my first lesson) and he’s writing articles with friends via WhatsApp for a future book. I got my parents an iPad and we’re connected visually. Everyone has a mix of adventure and respect for the unknown.”
What I’m Doing to Achieve Happiness:
- Walking outdoors with my dog and friends and family. (It’s the best therapy).
- Spending “face time” with my work teams. Laughing while staying productive.
- Writing and more writing. Learning about the process of book publishing, and blogging about DoingCXRight®
- Expanding my professional skills via TedTalks, LinkedIn videos & Audible books.
- Learning “plant-based” cooking. GameChangers impacted me. (See StacysNotes)
- Playing games and sharing humor. It’s the only way to survive a non-funny time. I.e. Conference Call Bingo.
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~Stacy Sherman (contact me anytime)