Life Coaches often refer to the term ‘reframing’. Reframing is a technique used to create a different (and usually more positive) way of viewing a situation or circumstance – or even a person; it can be applied to almost anything. The situation hasn’t changed of course, but the way you’re viewing it has altered, you’re just changing the frame around it so you can see it in a new way. Simple!
Initial thought – “I got furloughed during lockdown and have now lost my job because of Coronavirus. This has ruined my year and now I have to find a new job which sucks.”
Reframe – “Being furloughed gave me a break from my usual routine and now that I’m not committed to that job anymore I have the opportunity to find a new role and gain experience in a different company, or try something new altogether.”
Reframe – “Losing my job has been tough but this experience will make me stronger and once I have a new position I will never take a pay cheque for granted again!”
I was having a discussion with a friend of mine the other day. We were talking about the impact of covid and the lockdown on our lives and she offered that everything happens for a reason, but I said that I don’t believe that. I explained that I’m uncomfortable with the idea of fate because it implies that everything’s already mapped out for us and brings up the connotation for me of a predetermined script we’re all blindly following like robots. I explained that although I don’t believe things happen for a reason (or that there’s a higher power running the show) I do believe that we should seek out the positives in everything that happens and that there is ALWAYS something we can learn or take forward no matter how bad the situation may seem.
The truth is though that it doesn’t matter whether my friend is right (that fate exists) or whether I’m right (that it doesn’t). What matters is that we both believe something that serves us well; we believe something that allows us to move forward. What we have in common is that we share the attitude that we all have control over how we view the events that take place and can choose to see the opportunities and find the positives, and now more than ever I think this is particularly important for all of us.
Finding the silver lining or having a healthy outlook doesn’t mean pretending to be happy all the time or constantly telling everyone life’s great, for me it means accepting what’s happened (remember my blog post on resilience), acknowledging how we’re feeling about it, then taking the time to identify the opportunities that situation can offer. Ask yourself questions like: What can I learn from the situation? How has this made me stronger? How has this made me more resilient? What am I grateful for? What opportunities does this bring? Reframe. Reframe. Reframe. This is how to rise like a phoenix from the ashes.