Happy Friday, y’all. I’m coming to you guys today with a post that I don’t do often, which is a life update.

First, how have you been? I think we’re all so overwhelmed with our own “stuff” right now, that it’s hard to remember to check on others, too. Checking on others is something I need to be better at right now. It’s a really crazy time to be alive, and if I have to call this a “historic time” one more time this week, I might just lose it. Isn’t it always a historical time? That phrase means nothing.

The point is, the world is batshit crazy right now. I live in Southeast Alabama and we’re on week 2 of work-from-home duty and voluntary isolation due to the coronavirus. Other parts of the country have seen hundreds and even thousands of deaths because of this thing, entire countries have gone into mandatory lockdown mode, and it seems like everyone here is just struggling to accept that they won’t be able to go to a baseball game and bitching about that. Give me a break. I’m upset that HangoutFest is up in the air (along with the $1100 I have invested into the trip) but you don’t see me out on the beach spreading my germs around because I want to be a dismissive brat.

Anyways… negative thoughts aside…

I think that one of the most resilient qualities that any person can possess is the ability to find the positive in the negative. There doesn’t always have to be a silver lining, but it feels a lot better when you aren’t stuck on the things that are keeping you down.

This is advice that I give to everyone that’s struggling with keto and also to my friends. For every negative thought you’re feeling, find two positives to outweigh it. I’m going to take my own advice in this post, and I hope you’ll see how this way of thinking allows you to focus on your support system and validate your concerns. And trust me, that validation piece is incredibly important, because you aren’t crazy and you totally deserve to feel like crap sometimes!

So let’s get started. Here’s everything negative I’m feeling right now

Negatives

  • Since we’re both “essential” workers, it’s not a question of “if” we get the virus, but “when.”
  • I’m not sure how “essential” my job actually is.
  • This complicates the raise I asked for and was hoping to get soon.
  • We probably won’t get to go to HangoutFest, which we have planned much of the year around already.

So there are 4 pretty big concerns I have right now. If I let my mind dwell on those concerns, I’m sure you can see how quickly those could turn into some pretty heavy, depressing thoughts. The point of this exercise is not to make you feel bad for thinking these things, so the next step is to accept these things.

Exercise in negativity

So for each of these negative feelings, I now need to realistically think of what would happen if they came true.

Q: What would happen if we both get the virus?
A: We would probably be okay and would have to self-quarantine for 2 weeks. 

Q: What if I lose my job?
A: I would find another one. It wouldn’t be the end of the world.

Q: What if I don’t get my raise?
A: Well, I’m not going to make less money than I already am, so… it’s just disappointing, but it isn’t the worst that could happen.

Q: What if HangoutFest is canceled?
A: We won’t see our fav artists on May 15. But I would get my leave time and my $1100 investment back.

All of these things suck but none of them are the end of the world. Going through scenarios helps me quell my brain’s urge to dwell on the uncertain. So let’s move to positive thoughts now.

Positives

Ok, so for every negative, I need to find two positives. We’re looking at finding eight positives. Let’s do it.

  • I’ve been able to spend a lot more time at home with my wife and pets since we’ve begun to telecommute.
  • I have more time to focus on my half marathon plan now that I’m spending less time driving.
  • Less driving = smaller gas bill
  • Maybe I’ll save some money by not going to this festival.
  • I’ve been much more intentional in my actions and 
  • I’ve put out higher quality work since I’m able to focus entirely on one thing at a time.
  • If I were to lose my job, I would be able to venture into another profession and potentially learn new skills.
  • I’m so thankful during all of this to have work to do and a job that’s willing to retain me (for now). As hard as it is to find the motivation to continue during all of this, it’s a good thing I’m essential.

I’m going to be honest, that exercise for finding positivity isn’t the easiest, but I do feel better now that I see it on the screen. My worries don’t outweigh my wins right now.

If you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed, give this a shot. Sometimes adjusting your narrative is all you need to see the world through a clearer lens.

Until next time,

<3 RKF