This is what one of my students said in our first online class this year.
The intermediate ACT class had been disrupted by lockdown due to the Coronavirus pandemic, and with hardly any adjustment period we had to swap from a physical classroom to Zoom.
These are unprecedented times and there is no real blueprint to be guided by.
Being faced with this pandemic that constantly impacts on all of our lives many of us feel vulnerable. Fewer elements of our lives feel predictable; we may plan but the virus with outbreaks creating new lockdowns and quarantines it is definitely calling the shots! All of our lives are impacted on so many levels. We may feel like we have no control.
Feeling like we have no control is a very hard thing to deal with. It increases our anxieties and often overwhelms us. Our minds are going into overdrive, trying to find solutions.
One major problem is that we often attempt to control the things we have no control over. We are looking into the wrong areas and worry about things we cannot fix.
This does not mean that we can do nothing! In one of my ACT courses I reflected with students on the ‘spheres of control’:
Spheres of Control:
What can you control, or influence in life and what can you only accept?
As you will have noticed the sphere where we can exert control is by far the smallest. The middle sphere is larger but further away from us and our control; the outer sphere is the largest where have no control.
If you want, try it out and write lists:
- What can you control in your life?
- What can you only influence?
- Over which things do you have no control at all?
(Tip: The only things we can really control are our own actions / choices.)
So, while we are not in control of the pandemic, (but we hope the scientists are on it!!!), we can make the choice to engage in meaningful actions:
- Listen to government updates,
- Wear face masks
- Wash hands frequently
- Keep social distance
These are all actions that help keep us all safe and that protect the NHS from being overwhelmed.