We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.Romans 5: 3-5 ESV
I’ve talked with a lot of people who are struggling with their new reality from this COVID 19 Pandemic. It’s bringing up emotions and feelings that are leaving them exhausted and feeling like a failure as they work from home, teach their kiddos and manage a full household 24/7.
In order to adapt to the reality of what life looks like now, we have to be able to shift our perspective and thinking to focus on what we can do, need to do and have to do to get through this.
Getting perspective helps you reframe the narrative you are telling yourself and will help you walk through this pandemic with clarity and confidence with the adequate perspective to move forward.
How to Begin to Make the Shift
Create space to reflect and clear your head. Park your brain so you can engage with the Holy Spirit. Do what you need to do to make it happen. This will look different for everyone. Find the space and make time. It’s okay to take all the time you need to clear your head. Don’t skimp here. Sit for awhile. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Give yourself permission to be open to what the Holy Spirit is showing you.
As you are clearing your head notice what is going on inside of you. Ask yourself the following questions:
What is bringing life into my soul right now?
What is weighing me down?
What am I doing that I don’t want to do?
What am I doing that feeds my soul?
What does my heart say?
What to Do Next
Identify your core feelings. I know I said the feelings word and that can cause fear and anxiety if there are hurts and wounds that have been buried deep because let’s face it no one wants to acknowledge pain. This is deep work and will help you bring to the surface sooner rather than later those core feelings that are hurting your soul. Partner with the Holy Spirit asking Him to reveal those feelings so He can heal them. This area is key to relating better with the people in your life. Feelings are data and they often inform how you respond to yourself and others. Feelings and emotions can tell us things that reason can’t. They provide a window into our hearts. The goal here is acknowledging those feelings and asking God to show you more of Him as you work through them. Give yourself permission to feel so you can shift your perspective and move on.
Ask yourself the following questions and write down in a journal or on your phone or computer what the Holy Spirit brings to mind.
I feel vulnerable when __________________
What feels ever-present in me?
What feels steady in me?
When I’m feeling strong I _________________
When I’m fearful I _____________________
Get REAL about what’s not working in your life right now. Bring to the light the things you are doing you don’t want to do or are ignoring and ask yourself why this is causing you or your loved ones dissatisfaction. Awareness here will help you to respond quickly to the dissatisfaction so you can move forward in your new shift in perspective. It’s not necessary to spend a lot of time here, just enough to figure out what isn’t working so you can figure out what you need to do that will work and that will reflect who you desire to be. The dissatisfaction is draining, causes you unhappiness, sadness, anxiety, disappointment and feeds the fuel for unmet expectations.
Be honest even if it isn’t pretty. Ask yourself these questions:
Why is this ____________________ causing me so much dissatisfaction?
What are my expectations that aren’t being met?
How would I like this to be?
What needs to be different?
What steps can I take to move forward?
What will success look like?
Begin to Take Baby Steps and Grace Yourself
Once you’ve created the space to park your brain, dug deep to uncover your core feelings and got real about them, you’ve taken the first steps from your present state to get to your desired state. As you uncover what’s going on inside of you and you examine your feelings, unmet expectations, dissatisfactions with yourself and others, you don’t want to stay here. You want to begin to step into what you want to be different and then just like a baby learning to stand and walk you pray, you watch and you step letting the Holy Spirit guide your steps and then you do it over and over again. Grace yourself as you fall down and get back up learning how to walk in your new perspective.
You will never be sorry you took the time to shift your perspective.
May God who gives patience, steadiness, and encouragement help you to live in complete harmony with each other—each with the attitude of Christ toward the other.Romans 15: TLB