By Aaron Williams, CEO, Mindstar

An interesting thing happened to many of us during the COVID-19 crisis.

Have you noticed how more people suddenly seem to have become more reflective on their lives?  On their work/life balance? How lots of us now seem to have more gratitude for the simple things in life?

Many of us have experienced a significant, healthy shift in our “perspective”.

The question is, how do we make sure that we maintain it?

In pre-COVID times (remember way back then?), some of my executive coaching clients would tell me that they hated their jobs and were looking for other opportunities (at the same pay level or above, of course).

They would talk about how they felt so miserable and frustrated and how they had this overwhelming sense of emptiness.

Some talked about how their partners just didn’t understand them and the pressures and struggle of what they went through every single day at work.

Then a little thing called the Corona Virus pandemic hit.

As the COVID-19 crisis began to take shape around the world, it was amazing how (almost overnight) when I checked in to ask them how they were going, every single one of them then said: “I am just so happy to have my job. It makes you so grateful for all the simple things that you have in life, like your health and your job and your family.”

What had directly changed for them?

Nothing.

At that stage nothing at all had happened in the immediate world around them. But on the news, they had seen the effects of the Coronavirus in other countries.

What had shifted?

Their perspective.

All of a sudden, they had a new-found gratitude for everything that they had. They were reminded of what was most important to them.

However, it shouldn’t take a pandemic for all of us to make a positive shift in our thinking and alter our perspective on the world.

So how can we do it?

The first step is to develop a crystal clear understanding of what it is that is most important to YOU, deep down – identifying your core values.  Because if you are crystal clear on what it is you want in life, then finding real happiness and meaning is not easy, but with the right training, it suddenly becomes very, very simple.

If you know your “why”, you can put up with any “how”.

There are some great values exercises that I am happy to share that can help you do this work.

The second step is to make sure that you are living with some kind of healthy balance.

An example of a tool that I use for my workshops is the 6 Buckets Challenge: Wellbeing Check-in.

We all have 6 buckets (or domains) of wellbeing in our lives:

  1. Work
  2. Physical
  3. Psychological
  4. Emotional
  5. Spiritual
  6. Relationships

It is unrealistic to think that all of these buckets will ever be full.  It doesn’t happen…

But what is most important, is that none of these buckets ever get empty.

Because, if one of our buckets gets very low, or empty, it pulls all of the others down.

Looking at the six buckets of wellbeing above, let me give you an example…

Imagine that you love your job, you work out at your home gym fifteen times a week and are a Greed Adonis, you are psychologically and emotionally healthy, and for spiritual enlightenment you sit on a rock and meditate at sunrise for an hour every single morning…

BUT…

You work long hours and are always attached to your phone, so your relationship with your partner and children is suffering, and you beat yourself up with this guilt…

The result is that your “relationships bucket” will drag all of the others down…

So in our transitioning, uncertain, ever-changing post-COVID-19 world, I recommend to my workshop participants to use the 6 Buckets Challenge: Wellbeing Check-in at least once a fortnight – if not once a week – just to check-in and see how you are travelling.

The challenge immediately makes it crystal clear which of your buckets might be getting low…

All you need to do then is work out what you need to do (or change in your life) to start to fill it back up.

Aaron Williams, is an Executive Wellbeing Coach, Keynote Speaker and the CEO & co-founder of Mindstar, a leading wellbeing and mental health organisation. Aaron’s mission is to crush the stigma associated with seeking support for mental health – and to give people the knowledge, inspiration and tools to improve and maintain their wellbeing. To check out how Aaron can work with your organisation or speak at your upcoming event, contact Keith Harwood at Inspire Speakers on keith@inspirespeakers.com.au