Defining your ‘normal’ after COVID-19

Sunny Mountain Trail — Photo by Welcomia

These turbulent corona lockdown times for all of us have been a time of seeing and doing things differently; different from ever before.

Being in lockdown for almost 2 months has been a completely new — at times stressful — experience, but has also put life in a completely different light. Causing many to think about different life avenues that might be worth exploring. Looking at the way they’ve been living life with fresh eyes.

Is this happening for you? Have you been thinking about what your future holds?

Perhaps you’ve been asking yourself questions like ….

  • How happy am I with the way I’ve been living my life up till now?
  • What things would I like to change about the way I live my life?
  • How do I want to live my life when life returns to ‘normal’?
  • What impact would changing those things have on myself, the people I love?

You may have come to the conclusion you don’t want to return to the ‘normal’ from before. If you then find yourself not quite knowing how to figure out what you want your ‘new normal’ to look like, why not start by returning to your core values?

What are core values?

They are principles or beliefs that you view as of being of central importance. To put it simply: they define not just who you are, but also how you act and what decisions you make. They form your moral GPS and using them as such makes coming to hard decisions a lot easier.

3 Easy steps to reconnect with your core values

Step 1 – Your Dream Jobs

Do you have a dream job or jobs? What did you want to be when you were a kid? What makes those jobs dream jobs? What characteristics do they have?

List at least 10 dream jobs and their characteristics. Those jobs can be anything. Never mind whether or not is even remotely feasible you’ll ever hold it. If your dream job is being a fairy godmother to Cinderella, I say go for it!

Step 2 – Find The Common Threads

Go over the characteristics for each of your dream jobs and see what common threads you can find.

Usually people who do this exercise find that each of the jobs on their list has characteristics in common with other jobs on it.

The 3 to 5 characteristics that appear most often are your core values.

Having more core values would make it hard to live by them 24/7. It would confuse your moral GPS.

Step 3 – Put Them To The Test

When you’ve determined what your 3 – 5 core values are it is time to put them to the test. To make sure they truly are the values that are at the heart of you and your moral GPS.

Test your values by asking yourself the following questions for each of them:

  • Would you ignore your core value if someone offered you a huge sum of money to do so?
  • How easily do you ignore your core value when times are stressful or when it is (very) inconvenient to honour it?
  • Have you ever ignored your core value and how did that make you feel?
  • Will this core value still hold true for you say in 20 or 30 years time?

Knowing your core values means knowing an essential part of yourself. They also are an invaluable tool in making decisions, especially difficult ones, as the first question you can ask yourself is whether or not what your about to decide is in alignment with them.

The perfect place to start

Knowing this essential part of yourself, the essence of you as it were, is the perfect place to start when you are figuring out what your ‘new normal’ will be like.

As always …

Go dare greatly!