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The Effort is Within Your Control

You control the effort, not the results. If there is anything in your life you want to change, you can take action today to move towards your desired goal. You might not know exactly what action to take. That is fine – then the action today is to determine what action you need to take tomorrow.

You are not in full control of what direction your life takes. Your environment, other people, and chance all play a part, too.

That is why the focus of your daily review before bed should be on the action you took today, not the results you experienced.

Try a Less Smart Phone

Have you considered a ‘dumbphone’? We all have smartphones in our pockets full of apps to entertain and distract us. 15 years ago, we had phones that could only make calls and send text messages. More and more people are returning to simpler phones. They find that it gives them more focus and more creativity, and they spend more time with friends.

I still have a smartphone. But I also have a very simple phone I take with me when I head to our summer cottage for my annual silent retreat, or simply to spend time focused on something. With my simple phone, I am not totally isolated. But everything that happens in the world and on social media must wait until I am back home. Try buying a second-hand simple phone and spend one day a week with just that. The change can be dramatic.

Find a Positive Feed

When we have some time to spare, or just need a distraction, we tend to mindlessly scroll down the news feed on our phones. This year, that has not been a positive experience.

Unless you take control, your device is going to serve you the content that most people have reacted to, and this year that has been coronavirus, fake news, wildfires, and disasters.

Instead of passively scrolling down your feed, actively choose a positive information source. You might look at an inspiring Instagram account, a Pinterest board, or surf Airbnb imagining where your next trip will go once the pandemic lockdowns are over. It’s your choice. Feed your brain something positive.

Do Your Part

All over the world, “pandemic fatigue” is spreading. After eight months of restrictions, everybody is tired and many have started ignoring advice or even protesting restrictions.

You cannot solve that. Bullying victims and other anxiety sufferers tend to worry about a lot of things that are outside of their control, but you cannot stop this pandemic. What you can do is to behave sensibly and adhere to the official guidelines where you are. Don’t read articles and watch news stories about the places where it’s bad. Your media will always tell you the story from where it’s worst.

Think about the sensible precautions you are taking, and think about all the sensible people all over the world who are doing the same. We’re fighting this fight together.