Pandemic or not, as I mentioned in a recent webinar, this is not the first crisis the entrepreneurial world has gone through and it will not be the last. During this webinar, one of the participants shared that he finds the present crisis (COVID-19) very stressful and he wondered what an entrepreneur, man or woman, can do in light of maybe losing everything? The question made me think a lot, but again, our situation is no different than an employee who loses his job.
I’ll be honest with you; it annoys me that we put the entrepreneur on a pedestal as if we were a superman or super-woman.
So, here is my answer and my advice when you face a crisis as dramatic as the one we are currently experiencing.
First and foremost, accept that you have emotions and that it is normal for you to go through ups and downs. When you hit a down, stop, analyze the emotion you are experiencing and accept it. But don’t stay there too long, because self-pity never helps improve or resolve a problem.
This is where the WHY of what you do matters. It will act as a light house as it does for boats caught in a storm or in a fog. If the rationale for being an entrepreneur or an employee is well founded, it will not change in times of crisis. Only your actions and strategies will have to change during the crisis.
This is where you will feel the power of rituals. You don’t have any? Take the opportunity to create one, because it acts as an anchor in difficult situations. Your rituals will not prevent life from rocking your boat, but they will allow you to stay grounded and not drift away.
Here, I want to make it clear, I am mainly referring to personal rituals and not work-related rituals although they are just as important. We often make the mistake in difficult times of abandoning these rituals. I’m telling you, it’s a big mistake!
Let me share my rituals for your information. They work very well for me. You can adapt them to make them work for you.
The objective of my rituals is to bring a sort of balance: health, physical, spiritual and mental. I have two rituals: one in the morning and one at the end of the day. I start early and go to bed early. My spouse is, from time to time, exasperated with me about the time at which I go to bed …
My morning ritual:
- 30 minutes of reading on a subject that I want to learn. Right now, I’m reading about emotional intelligence;
- Spiritual reading – A Course in Miracles – only one page per day;
- 20 minutes of meditation
- Various learning. As of this writing, I am learning Spanish using the Duolingo app;
- I answer 15 questions that I call my Power Questions. They include my affirmations of gratitude and my three commitments for the day.
This routine takes me approximately 90 minutes to complete.
My end of day ritual:
- Answer a series of 10 questions to review my day;
- Finalize my work-related duties including planning for the next day;
- 30 minutes of exercise;
- Writing in my journal.
These are my two rituals that I do religiously on weekdays only. On weekends, I let go of everything. I don’t hesitate to say that these habits saved me more than once from very tense personal or professional situations. Wondering how they saved me? They allowed me to stay level headed and to anchor myself firmly despite the fact that I was facing major challenges. A domino effect that I have seen from this practice is that it has allowed me to discover the opportunities that were hidden in the storm. Listen “through the present situation, there are opportunities”. Will you have your mind rested to capture them?
In closing, remember that the sun always comes back after a period of bad weather.
Thank you and ride the storm.
It’s going to be fine.