Thinking Through The Pandemic

Coping with COVID Series

 

Donald Robertson, modern Stoic philosopher and therapist.I was at a book signing a while back, signing a book of mine that is a few years old.  This person picked it up, looked at the publication date, put it down, and said, “I was looking for something more recent.”

That had me pondering… how long is information valid?  Sure, I would not likely want to read a computer book about the Windows 98 operating system, or about the coming “Y2K crisis.”  But what about transformational information?  When does that lose value?

Human brains have not changed in structure for millenia.  Which is why we still garner insight and understanding from books written millenia ago.  Ancient thoughts and texts still illuminate us these days.

Which brings me to my guest this week on the Thriveology Podcast.  I asked Donald Robertson to talk with me about some pretty old thoughts.  No, Donald is not millenia old.  But the philosophy he espouses and teaches is.  Donald is a modern Stoic philosopher, drawing on ancient Stoicism and what it offers to us in our current world.

And in our current pandemic situation, Stoic thought has LOTS to teach us.  In fact, Stoic thought is the underlying philosophy of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, the cornerstone of modern mental health counseling.

Donald discusses the relevance of Stoic philosophy in today’s world, and how we can apply it to the pandemic in which we find ourselves.  Listen in as Donald Robertson gives some powerful help in dealing with our thoughts and our emotions in the midst of today’s (and future) struggles.

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DonaldRobertson.name
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Challenge Makes Us Grow

Steve Sims and how challenge helps us to grow.When I was a kid, I hit this point when I was growing fast.  So fast that my limbs hurt, I constantly tripped, and knocked everthing over as my hand got there before I expected.  Growth was a challenge.

Generally, though, it works the other way.  When we are challenged (and take it on), we grow.  A child wants to crawl, then walk, then run.  But wanting to is not the same as being able to.  Crawling ends up being a bellyflop.  Walking leads to teetering bottom-bumps.  And running… well, that just leads to face-plants.  But so far, I have never seen a child give up and say, “Well, I just can’t do that.  I guess I’m not meant to crawl/walk/run.”  The child just tries again.

Challenge is something we can rise to, expand into.  And when we do, challenge is the impetus for growth.

In this episode of the Thriveology Podcast, I talk with Steve Sims.  At the age of 15, Steve finished his schooling in England, and stepped right into what seemed to be his destiny:  masonry.  Just like his father, his grandfather, his uncles, and his cousins.  In an instant of inspiration, Steve looked at his family and realized this was not his destiny.  As he told me, it was not that he was better than his family, but that he thought there was something better for him.

That set him on a search for his own destiny, a way to see the world and meet people with different viewpoints and lifestyles.  This twisted path has led to now.  Through taking on challenges and growing through them.

Listen in as Steve and I discuss his life, his challenges, and the success of taking on those challenges.

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The Fear/Anxiety Contagion

Coping with COVID Series

How to avoid being infected by the emotional contagion of fear and anxiety, especially during the coronavirus pandemic.  Special coronavirus podcast episode.It’s highly contagious.  You can catch it from a single interaction with one person.  You can catch it much faster in a crowd.  You can pass it on to someone else in an instant.

You can also catch it from just reading, watching, or listening to something.

In 39 milliseconds, you have it… and you didn’t even see it coming!

Coronavirus?  Nope.  That is certainly serious, and you absolutely want to do everything you can to avoid catching or spreading it.  I do not want to minimize the risks of this pandemic.

But that is not the contagion I am focusing on here.

This contagion is fear and anxiety.  Yes, you can catch fear.  Yes, you can catch anxiety.  And you can also spread them.

Humans have a natural wiring (we share it with the animals at the watering hole… and all the others) to pick up on fear and anxiety.

Many times, people have said, “Should I panic over this?”  The “this” has been lots of different things.  And my answer is always, “Panic is never a better option.  Should you respond?  Should you choose an action? Yes.  Panic?  No.”

That is easier said than done. But on this episode of the Thriveology Podcast, I share why fear/anxiety is contagious, along with how to limit the infection.  Listen below.

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Lee’s Thrive Books

Getting Clear By Getting Real

Lisa Cherney shares her 12 Commandments for Getting F***ing Real.What happens when you feel hollow and lost in life, even when you are surrounded by people?

What happens when you find success… only to discover it wasn’t really the success you wanted?

What happens when you realize that you’ve been hiding and pretending… not being yourself… even when you are with friends and loved ones?

You may just keep on pushing forward.

Or you might get real.  My guest on this episode pushes the Get Real part, adding that you need to “get f***ing real.”  (Don’t worry.  We never actually say it on the episode… it isn’t really a part of my vocabulary.  But Lisa does make the point that this is REALLY important, getting real.

Lisa Cherney built a successful business helping others build their successful mission-focused businesses.  And even with a 7-figure business… it was not the success she wanted.  She was helping others follow their passion… and was losing her own.

One day, while traveling, she started jotting down some statements… some commandments… that she believed she needed to follow.  About getting real.  Being clear.  Of being aligned.

Those statements became her “12 Commandments of Getting F***ing Real.”  And with that, she closed down her 7-figure business and followed her own mission.  To be clear, to be real… and to help others do the same.

Listen in as Lisa and I discuss what it means to Get Real.  Why it matters.  And why the world needs Real people now, more than ever.

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Free From Pain

If you are alive, you will feel pain.  For some, it is just a little here and a little there.  For others, pain is chronic and constant.  Maybe just a little or maybe a lot.

Since I tend to be on the active side, I tend to have lots of bumps and bruises.  And at one point in my life, when I was suffering from an illness, I had significant pain.  Which means I am on the lookout for how to find pain relief that does not include a pill to take.

Sharon Smith.  Freedom from pain with EFT.  Healing chronic pain and the underlying emotional issues.After years of dealing with chronic pain, my guest was searching for a way to heal her own pain.  And in the process, she has developed an approach that has helped many others to find pain relief without medication or medical intervention.  Oftentimes, when those interventions have already failed!

Sharon Smith applies an approach that is simple and straightforward.  It integrates physical healing with emotional release, reducing pain and releasing stuck emotions.

Often, when we talk about emotional issues and concerns, we use physical images:  someone being a “pain in the neck,” wanting someone to “get off your back,” and many others.  Why?  Because there is a link between emotional pain and physical pain (and vice versa).

In our discussion, Sharon helps me with a little elbow pain that leads to some insight for me.  And she also has some resources for you to get started with your own pain.

Join us.  Listen below.

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Break Free From Your Prison

What prison holds you?

We ALL have some prison in our lives.  Maybe there aren’t any real bars and locked doors.  But it still keeps us stuck, trapped and unable to grow.  It might be a way of thinking, a relationship, a job.  It may be just your own view of yourself and your capacities.  But something keeps us stuck.

Is it possible to break free?  To escape the prisons in our lives?

Marian McSpadden on how to break free from your own prison.  According to my guest on this episode of the Thriveology Podcast, is not only possible… it is crucial!

Marian McSpadden discovered that she was trapped in a life… a belief system… that kept her from becoming her truest and best self.

So, she planned her escape!  And she broke free.  In her case, quite literally.  Was it easy?  No.  Was it worthwhile?  Marian says, “Absolutely!”

And so, Marian is out to help others find their freedom from their own prison.  If you are stuck, caught in a belief system, a relationship, a job, or something else, discover your path out, your escape route!

Listen in as Marian McSpadden and I discuss the power of breaking free from your prison.

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Holding On (When Life Gets You Down)

How to Hold Up When Life Gets You Down.Life is tough.

Not always.  But along the way.  And even after you get past one struggle, that doesn’t mean there isn’t another one up ahead.  That’s just the nature of life.

It doesn’t mean you are doing anything wrong or that the world, God, or the Universe is out to teach you a lesson.  It’s just the nature of life.

You may notice 2 crowds.  First is the “Grind Culture” that just says to suck it up, keep on grinding, and MAKE it work.  They have a point that you have to get through some tough times.  But sometimes, it is wise to step back and ask if the fight is worth it.

Then there is the “Sign Culture.”  That group tells you that any struggle is an indication you are on the wrong path, that something is wrong with you, and that life “should” be easy… if you are doing it right.  They have a point that sometimes, a struggle is pointing to you moving the wrong way… swimming upstream.  But the fact is, life means struggles… at times.

So what do you do to hold up when life gets you down?

We discuss it… and 5 things to do… on this episode of the Thriveology Podcast.  Listen below.

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How To Guarantee You DON’T Thrive

Part 2

How to NOT thrive... and what to do instead.Well, you are on to me!  Last week, I started talking about things you can do to guarantee that you DON’T thrive.  I’m sure you knew I didn’t really want you to NOT thrive.  But I wanted to point out some ways people make themselves miserable… and what they might do to shift.

If you missed that episode, JUST CLICK HERE TO HEAR IT.

It is interesting to notice how we humans can really mess up our lives!  Life throws us enough to deal with.  Then, we tend to multiply it with our own blind spots and stuck points.

With my Top 10 List To Guarantee You Don’t Thrive, I wanted to point out 10 ways that people really do keep themselves stuck.  And the fact is, I see these same patterns repeated over and over by many people.

So, if you see yourself in one (or more) of the stuck points, that just means you are… well… human.  Congratulations on being able to spot it!  That is the first step in doing something different… something new… something more… THRIVING!

Listen in below for the REST of the ways you can keep from thriving… so you can thrive!  (Unless you don’t want to… then just follow my suggestions.)

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How To Guarantee You DON’T Thrive

Part 1

5 ways to guarantee that you don't thrive... and what to do instead.Over the years, I have tried to learn to thrive.  And I have tried to teach others how to thrive… even getting other experts to do the same.

But today, just for a moment, let’s assume you DON’T want to thrive.  In fact, you want to… well, do the opposite of thriving!  You want to be miserable and live a smaller life.  You want to feel stuck and frustrated. (I’m not going to even explain WHY you would want to do that… let’s play a little mental game and pretend you just don’t want to thrive.)

What then?

How would you go about NOT thriving?  How would you really make yourself as miserable as possible?

In this episode of the Thriveology Podcast, I start in on my Top 10 List of How NOT To Thrive.  I cover 5 top ways to NOT thrive in this episode, and follow up with the other 5 in the next episode.

Why in the world would I do this?

Because if you know how to NOT thrive, then you can NOT do the NOT’s.  You can do the opposite, and move toward thriving.  It is also a good way to run through the list and see if you find yourself falling into any of the non-thriving traps.  They are all around us!  And sometimes, we are doing them… not even realizing it.

Listen below for part 1 of How To Guarantee You Don’t Thrive.

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Order, Disorder, Reorder

The cycle of life:  order, disorder, reorderThere are days when you just wish that something would change.  The same ol’ same ol’ just seems to roll along.  And then there are the days you wished that things wouldn’t change.  What happened?  How did things turn upside down?

One simple word to explain both situations:  Life.

If you don’t find that comforting, let’s call it the cycle of life.  Because cycles keep on rolling.  If you can’t wait for a change, no worries.  Things will change.  If things seem so be changing on all sides, guess what?  Change will stop.  Things will re-configure.

In life, we are always moving through a cycle:  Order, Disorder, Reorder.  The first can get a little old and stale.  But at least it is predictable and… maybe even feels safe.  Then comes the call, the letter, the diagnosis, the pink slip, or maybe just the next step.  A child goes off to college, you finish college, a friend moves away, you move away.  Something shifts and throws you into disorder.

It is a tough spot.  Painful and grief-ful.  But life does not stop there.  We move through it, find a new way to keep on moving.  And life re-orders.  It is a new order.  But it is the re-order.

And at some point, the reorder becomes the order.  And the cycle repeats.  From the day we are born until the day we die.

The question is how we move through the cycle… not IF, but HOW.

Listen to this episode of the Thriveology Podcast for moving through the Order/Disorder/Reorder Cycle.

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