During the early stages of the pandemic, when the public was urged to limit their movement in order to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus, it appeared as if some individuals chose to respond to the advice one of two ways. Others opted to take shelter in place, reasoning to themselves, “Why not utilise this long break to finally pursue a project I’ve wanted to undertake for a long time?” While the rest of us had no such intentions, I didn’t either. I had no intention of emerging as a more improved person. It seemed like everything in the world was overpowering, and everything in my life felt like it was just a matter of getting by day by day.

During the course of these events, we found out that we cannot help but alter as a result of this experience. We can help make change happen instead of allowing it to occur to us.

Others of us will make little changes to our daily routines. A complete “renewal” will be demanded by others. You can’t go about change in the same way everyone else does; what’s most essential is to be methodical and intentional, and keep pushing ahead.

As I consider who I want to be and how I want to develop, this is what has worked for me: This book offers you valuable tips to assist you along your own personal path.

Review your long-term objectives. Although I dislike making New Year’s goals, it is not because I believe that they are ineffective. Rather, I think that we should not confine ourselves to scrutinising our lives one time each year. You should definitely do it immediately. Consider this moment of turmoil in our nation—both due to the Ebola virus and the ongoing debate over race relations—a chance to reflect on your goals and who you want to be.

There are new experiences we’ve never had before, and because of that, we have the opportunity to see our life from a whole fresh perspective. Is your own long-term objective meaningful and consistent with your personal values? Are your priorities different now? Don’t wait until the end of the month or the end of the year to make a big life change.

Take a moment to reflect on the happenings of this year. Do you have issues that you’ve discovered or that you have contemplated, which bother you? Do you regret that you didn’t have any human contact while in quarantine? Were you more likely to have a strong desire for an active lifestyle when you spent most of your time at home? Looking back on things that didn’t work out for you may be a wonderful resource to aid in making decisions about what you should do differently moving ahead.

In the year leading up to the COVID-19 epidemic, I was going on airline flights for work almost every week. I have been home for around 10 years and these last six months have been the longest stretch of time that I’ve been away from home for. This is something I have discovered: I like being at home. I’ve discovered that it is possible to be a leader, coworker, and influencer without having to fly to the meetings each week. I am happier, healthier, and better for the environment with my decision. Because I now understand this, it thrills me to think about how I can grow and accomplish things in a new manner.

Don’t rely on information from other parties, and instead, make your own unique data-fueled changes. My emotions are data for me. Throughout this period, what were the highs and lows of your emotions? In what ways do you hope these stories will benefit you?

Staying in touch with my emotions has led me to realise the significance of appreciating all times of pleasure. I have always believed in it, but since I am so busy most of the time, I have difficulty recognising the little joys and keeping that pleasure. In the past, I would laugh right then and then if my dog did anything amusing. Afterward, I would go on with whatever I was doing. It only occurred to me to chuckle when I realised that she was oblivious to the state of the world.

Knowledge is power. In order to effect change — both personal and social — we need to both understand why things are the way they are and also put in the time and effort to learn more about it. I work continuously to spread awareness about mental health, and I’m always trying to find new methods to raise awareness.

I’ve been taking an increasing interest in the history of mental health in the Black community recently as our nation grapples with its growing consciousness of systematic racism. It is our mental health system’s obligation to make improvements for everyone, including those who are people of colour. Another way we can improve the world is by making sure BIPOC people have a strong presence in the mental health and well-being sector. Their voices cannot be ignored longer.

Admit that you are powerful. A little adjustment to ourselves may have a huge impact on our society. Consider the broader effect our collective shift will have if we each make one little positive contribution and release it into the world. Let’s say that we all decide to “travel less for work.” That’s a massive effect on the environment. Another way to say this is that everyone of us might pledge to volunteer with an organisation we’ve never worked with before, or to improve our understanding of racism, which would have a real impact. To put it simply, when we take personal steps to lead a more happy life, everyone benefits.

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