The sun has been popping up quite a bit here in Ireland this month. I adore this country when the sun shines!
The sun reminded me of last year. When we began lockdown 2020 and we had the most beautiful weather. I used to walk down the road two kilometers up the road two kilometers down up, down and up, me and my son, Oliver, with the two young girls Abigail & Eva.
We used to push them in double buggies or we’d use the aluminium attachment for the bike, with a double seat in the trailer. They would sit in & we would cycle them down the road and they’d scream in delight. It was these thoughts that brought me to today’s idea for this blog. Mainly because it caused me to think about how I managed my mindset in lockdown and the lessons I have learned from that journey.
Because it wasn’t all sunshine.
I want to share with you. What did I learn? How did I harness those lessons of 2020 lockdown and how can you do the same. Not just in lockdown, but in any area of your life, so that you can make big changes and live your best life.
Throwback to March 2020. I remember it so clearly. It was to be two weeks lockdown at the time when the announcement came. Let’s flatten the curve they said. And I thought to myself ‘Oh we’re in it for the long haul’. I just had a knowing that it wasn’t going to be that simple.
I’m living on my own with the four children. School, child care, everything was cancelled – my busy mom taxi life became quiet and I was determined to see it as a time to embrace motherhood, embrace the challenges, do what had been on my to do list for months, take the exercise, enjoy family time and I remember writing down what I was going to do in those few weeks. It looked something like this:
I’m going to take time cooking.
I’m going to exercise more.
I’m going to get out every day.
I’m going to spend more time with the children.
I’m not going to rush through story time.
I’m going to clear the admin work for my business.
I’m going, going, going. I had all these goals.
I wanted to eat well. I wanted to catch up on all the passive stuff in the business that I hadn’t been getting around to.
Here’s what ACTUALLY happened in lockdown:
I found it really challenging to work around the children.
I found it really challenging actually internally not knowing when we were going to be getting out of lockdown. Where does this end and what’s happening next? Why can’t I travel? Why can’t I go and see my mom?
We ate a lot of junk.
We were more bored than content.
I had ZERO time to work on my business with 4 kids at home full time. It is a big fat MYTH that big children mind the small ones!
My mindset took a little bit of a twirl – during the day I seemed fine. We were getting outside enjoying the weather, exercise was the must do each day and that definitely supported us all – getting into nature. But when I went to bed at night I was dreaming. In the dream I’ve been locked in a lift. It’s like okay I’m locked in. Stay calm, we’re gonna get out, we’re gonna get out. Somebody’s coming. They’re gonna let us out and everything’s gonna be okay. It didn’t take Sherlock Holmes to put it together that I was having this feeling of being almost locked in a box. It makes total sense when I think of my number one value in life which is freedom.
Freedom to be and freedom to choose.
Lockdown 2020 was not going like I had planned at all. I was more Freddy Kruger than Mary Poppins.
I wasn’t exercising as much as I wanted. We were getting some exercise, but the eating was not healthy, not as healthy as I liked it to be at least.
I wasn’t really doing any work because I couldn’t focus. So all my goals weren’t getting hit. And then a friend said one day ‘Oh I do PE with the good-looking fellow with the curly hair, Joe. I haven’t missed a session online’. I thought, Oh my God I had so many goals. I was going to finally get fit and do three sessions a week on zoom because I had nowhere to go, no school runs and I’ve not done what I set out to do in lockdown one. Shit. I was in review and reflection state and it didn’t look good for me.
When you’re looking back at your wins and learnings in life you have a choice. You can feel disappointed in yourself and berate yourself for the things you haven’t done or you have the choice to look at the learnings and the lessons from that experience and grow.
So I set to work on my mindset. Lockdown was a true gift for me. When lockdown number two was coming I had mastered the mantra I will control the controllable and my mindset was able to work through any future lockdowns. I had realised I was free and I always will be free. Lockdown or no lockdown – freedom comes from within.
We can control everything that’s going on internally. We can control the controllable.
I started to work with more clients again. With lockdown number two child care was open which made a huge difference to my life and the small kiddies too that they were able to go out and socialise.
I evaluated what didn’t go well in lockdown one and what changes I could make in lockdown two.
I wanted to eat better and stop making excuses around exercise and instead exercise every single day. To make it a non-negotiable. The gift of reflection allowed me to get to the root cause of my procrastination in lockdown one. It was the fact that I felt like my freedom was being taken for me at a deep subconscious level and it was so deep in fact that it wasn’t in my consciousness at all during the day.
Once I healed that part of me then came the big shift. It removed the block and the symptom of it – the procrastination.
I looked ahead & I journaled.
Where do I want to be?
What are my immediate goals?
Where were my thoughts last time, in lockdown when we were in this state of not knowing?
In what ways am I already free?
What’s most important to me right now?
I went into lockdown two and I had a plan. I had a rock solid mindset – I’d dealt with the root cause.
I put specific plans in place.
I signed up to I did yoga with Adrienne for 30 days. I got up before the children so it was done before anyone woke up.
I cooked a healthy meal each day.
I caught up on all of my accounts (any self employed person will know how great this goal is).
I brought in and supported new clients in my business.
I practiced surrender, trust and gratitude.
In a nutshell what is my message for you today?
The results that you desire are in the daily habits
Review & reflect
Stop going, going, doing, doing, doing. Move inside and be.
Dig deep and find the root causes of your discomfort. Journal, meditate, walk, sit in silence, ask ‘what isn’t working for me right now?’ then make changes. Healing from the inside out gets rid of the frustration and the need for willpower method.
Still not sure what your blocks are? Reach out and speak to somebody about it. Find out what the root cause is and clear that subconscious pattern so you can make those shifts.
The results that you desire are in the daily habits. That’s it. Getting up that half an hour earlier and doing the yoga, eating the good food, slowing down and enjoying the little things. And you might well say ‘Well Norah how is that going to bring me in new clients?’
I’ll tell you – if you’re in business and you’re looking for new clients, it will happen because you are in the right frame of mind to attract those clients. You can post and do all of the strategy day in and day out but unless you are in alignment with yourself, feeling good and embodying that which you want to become – it will be a struggle.
Are you doing the things that feel congruent with who you are who you want to be?
I invite you to check in with yourself and ask what’s working and what’s not.
The magic is in the daily habits.