“Silver Linings” by Journalist Lea Waters

There is a lovely quote from the movie “Starman” (1984, starring Jeff Bridges). When asked what he learned from visiting Earth, the Starman said, “Shall I tell you what I find beautiful about you? You are at your very best when things are worst.”

Not always true, I know, but sometimes true and, hopefully, more often true than not.

These are scary times. Things may get worse for many of us before they get better. So, with the Starman’s quote in mind, I went scouring the Internet (bless those hard-working search engines!) for some hopeful ideas to focus on – ideas that might help us cope in more positive ways or, at the very least, distract us for a bit from the stress of the moment.

I found lots of great information: turning to virtual ways to connect, collaborate, learn, teach; some do’s and don’ts about homeschooling kids; physical and emotional ways to de-stress; places to explore (virtually, of course); and lots more.

So, in the next few weeks, I’ll be posting some of what I’ve found. I’ll also be posting some virtual training ideas from members of my TBR Certified Trainers team who are hard at work exploring ways to bring TBR to a virtual audience.

For now, I’ll begin with a paraphrased excerpt from an article titled “Silver Linings – How to Stay Positive During the Coronavirus Crisis” by Lea Waters (from The Guardian – for the complete article, click HERE):

Now might seem like an unusual time to talk about being positive. Yet staying positive is a core ingredient in the recipe of successful coping in a crisis. Now, more than ever, is the time for us to be proactive about creating small moments of happiness each day because positive emotions help us to undo the negative effects of stress.

Savor the small moments. Even during lockdown, you still have many small moments to enjoy: the smell of coffee in the morning, a hot shower, losing yourself in a good book (or movie), the sun on your face, a homemade meal, and more. When you stop to take in these moments, rather than letting them rush by without noticing them, you are giving your brain a chance to process the pleasure, which boosts the  serotonin in your brain – the feel good neurotransmitter that helps elevate your mood and that makes you feel calm.

Strengthen your connections. For those of you in family lockdown, now is the opportunity to spend quality time with your loved ones. Take the time to hug your kids or partner, tell stories, play games, have long conversations with them – all of these gestures promote closeness and also boost oxytocin – the hormone that bonds people together emotionally and that helps calm the body too. 

Look for the good in others. A crisis can bring out both the worst and the best in human nature … hopefully, the best is rising to this challenge. Doctors and medical staff are working overtime to help sick patients. Facebook groups are sewing face masks to donate to hospitals. Neighborhoods are putting together care packages. Friends from across the globe are reaching out to each other via emails, social media, and FaceTime. When we focus on these positive and pro-social aspects of the crisis, we are united in hope.

Be kind to yourself (and those around you). Above all, stay healthy and safe! 🙂 Sharon

8 comments

  • People have been asking lately, “How will we be different when we emerge from this experience?” My hope is that all of the above will continue. Thank you for sharing these thoughts with us.

  • Thank you for the wonderful reminders, Sharon. Look for the good in all things!

  • Thank you for these reminders, Sharon! I definitely needed this! My reminder to myself is to focus on the things I can do instead of the things I can’t do. I can’t go climbing or take the trip to London we had planned but I can get my garden started, get my house organized, help with the TBR Virtual Edition, enjoy seeing my flowers come up and most importantly foster a wonderful dog who desperately needed a home during this time. It’s all about perspective!

    • Hi Nicole! Glad you found the reminders helpful. Yes, it truly is about perspective and I really appreciated your tip to focus on the things we CAN do instead of the things we CAN’T do – loved your list of can-do items, especially the last item about your foster-dog! Stay healthy and safe! 🙂 Sharon

  • It always pays to stay positive! I have taught people for many years why worry about something: if you can do anything about, do it rather than worry; if you can’t do anything, what’s the point of worrying — you can’t do anything!!!

    And one more thing: if you believe in God, believe that the creator of the heavens and earth can deal with a simple virus.

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