February 10th • 2 min read
#Career #Change #People

Hit by a COVID Curveball? 4 Recovery Tips

Life is full of surprises. Like Forrest Gump said, “It’s like a box of chocolates and you never know what you’re going to get.” This couldn’t be truer to describe 2020. We did not see that coming. To be frank, many would say we were blind-sided and in an instant, our world was turned upside down. That’s the nature of curveballs. We never see them coming.
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Just like that, the COVID-19 pandemic completely changed our daily lives, our families, our jobs, our social lives, and so many of the things we took for granted disappeared. The change was dramatic and so fast our heads were left spinning. We’ve been weathering the storm for close to a year now and it’s clear that the only certainty is uncertainty itself. So then how can we stay strong in the face of chaos?


Take a moment to breathe. 

Step back, take a few deep breathes, and relax. When you’re hit with bad news, remember the power of breathing. Dismissed from your job? Step out of the office or building and practice breathing exercises. Received disappointing news about family or friends? Go for a walk, practice relaxation breathing, and talk to someone.

When under stress our breathing rate and pattern changes. Anxious people take small shallow breaths that can make symptoms worse. Try some breathing techniques such as abdominal breathing, focused breathing or equal breathing. These methods can help reduce stress or anxiety in the moment.

Make a plan

Are you doing things tomorrow? Are you thinking of how you are going to survive the next week? Planning it out can be helpful by writing it down. After you’ve had a chance to breathe of course. Make a list of things that need to be done so you can see it all in front of you.

There may be calls to make to Centrelink, the bank or to your landlord or to family members and friends. Some of these calls may be difficult, so prepare yourself and enlist support if you need it. Uncertainty is stress-inducing. This can lead us to panic and reduce our decision-making skills. By taking time to make plans and define your goals, it can bring some needed structure to reducing lost feelings and some self-confidence in your own resilience.


Practice self-compassion. 

With extra time on our hands, it’s a great time to make of list of things that bring you joy. And to get caught up on your never-ending to-do list. Do you wish you had more time for walks or hikes? The gym or cycling? Learning to cook? Reading or trying a new language? Focusing on achieving personal goals will make you feel productive and give you something to be proud of. This can also be said about upskilling professionally too.
Social connections matter too. It’s important to avoid the tendency to retreat and self-isolate until your world returns to normal. Make a list of friends, colleagues, and social engagements. Set goals to ensure you’re getting your human needs met while you’re in the midst of transition. Plus, you’ll be able to make the conversation interesting with the awesome things you’re accomplishing personally or professionally.

Look to the future. 

This isn’t over yet. From regions to entire countries, the situation is constantly shifting. We’re all doing the best we can to cope with the hand we’ve been dealt, and everyone’s situation is different. Try to find the good, proactively seek out positive moments, and spread kindness everywhere you go. 


Better days are ahead and there are many more delicious chocolates hiding in that box! Looking forward to things that make you happy can foster a positive mindset. Whether it’s planning coffee with a friend next week, catching up with old colleagues, or starting that course you’ve been considering for a while, it all helps. When life shakes our world upside down, reconnecting with the small pleasures in life often brings us the greatest joy.

Growth starts with individuals. Unlock the power in your people first.
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