May 14

Healthy Mindsets Needed at Halftime and Anytime of Crisis

Healthy Mindsets Needed at Halftime and Anytime of Crisis

By Deborah Johnson

May 14, 2020

coronavirus, COVID19, crisis, healthymindset, liveyourbestlife, midlife, pandemic, pivot, reinvention, secondhalfoflife, stress, survival, transition, uncertainty

Why Healthy Mindsets?

Why talk about healthy mindsets? Because many people are holding their breath, worried, and wondering what’s going to come next. Worry brings fear, brings panic and causes even physical symptoms. The halftime of life is usually a time of re-evaluation and even reinvention. You feel the clock ticking and it’s now or never to pursue your dreams but how do you do it? This can bring on that “lost” and stuck feeling—even panic!

The same feelings surface in a crisis, such as the one we’ve faced with COVID-19. So much was unknown at the start of this and it didn’t take long for panic to set in. People in full body-suits that looked like spacesuits were walking into local markets. There is fear, uncertainty and panic. I’m going to address some of that here, mainly with the healthy mindsets that are needed to help you get through the panic.

Find Something to Lower Stress

One of the reasons I’ve started my Music Membership Learn Music Again because research validates that music has the power to lower stress. This has never been as important with those losing confidence, losing hope and facing fear. 

For those running a business, this should be a major consideration—to also help your clients through this process. Supermarkets are wiping down carts, placing taped markers on the floor to help keep the social distancing. All to help mitigate the fear. Personally, find something that will help you cope. (Make sure you get your FREE Sheet music download at Five healthy mindsets are listed below.

Healthy Mindset One: Calm Down and Think Logically!

When I see people driving by themselves with face masks on, I realize they are living in a panic mode. There is no one around to infect them and now they are poisoning themselves with carbon monoxide. So we have to take a step back and look realistically at the situation. Getting worked up in a frenzy just causes stress and can be even more dangerous than a worldwide virus.

Stress can’t directly cause a heart attack but sudden stress can cause a cardiac event that feels like a heart attack termed broken heart syndrome.* Chronic stress can cause high blood pressure, overeating, irrational decisions and depression, In fact depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide. Almost 75% remain untreated.**

Then of course, there’s social media stress that can cause social media addiction! (Which then just causes more stress-- known as technostress!) Comparison with others and following activities that create panic are just a few. There so many possibilities here.*** Find something that will help you relax, such as a bath, walk or hobby.

Healthy Mindset Two: Don't Be in a Hurry to Make a Major Decision

When panicked, we could easily jump at solutions we feel could make our situation better. Quitting too soon is a big one. You may feel there’s no hope for your business ever getting back on its feet and quit. Make sure you listen to the previous episode on How to Manage Finances During a Crisis. It will really help you with this.

The same principle applies to relationships. What about the couples who suddenly find they have nothing in common? This is a very common occurrence at the halftime of life. It can also happen during a sequestration when you suddenly are faced with a relationship, whether a roommate or spouse, stuck together in tight quarters. Take time to negotiate and communicate. I’m not discounting separation or splits in certain situations, but just don’t be in a hurry and let emotions take over. Think logically. When in a panic mode or situation, you tend to act quickly and sometimes illogically.

Healthy Mindsets-Deborah Johnson

Healthy Mindset Three: Write Out your Thoughts Logically and Journal

My middle school diary mostly contained what I wore every day. It was very boring, but a few events were amplified. In Jr. High, I was extremely shy. I managed to ask a boy who was also in choir to the 8th grade picnic. His name was Sam. I still remember walking up to him, asking him quickly, then slipping away. I didn’t talk with him until the day of the picnic. I was so nervous. I can still feel the butterflies!

If I had taken the time to write out my thoughts in my journal, it might have helped me through what I felt was a very stressful time. I can definitely laugh about it now as I’m no longer that scared little girl. I was so nervous then that I thought I wouldn’t even be able to talk. What would I say?

Many are that nervous right now. They’re having to reinvent, regroup and start again. Whether you are at the halftime of life, or you are just coming out of your business being closed down for months because of a virus, you’re probably nervous! And probably a bit panicked as well! Take time to write in your journal—but definitely more than what you are wearing every day! Thoughts disentangle over the lips and through the fingertips. It really works!

Healthy Mindset Four: Surround Yourself with Good Advisors

This is a great one for those at the halftime of life. It is well-worth calling upon those in a similar field of business or life to gain some horse-sense. (notice I didn’t say cow-sense, even though I was born on a diary farm!)

Join the groups that will help you grow personally and professionally. A good mentor is worth gold and is worth the investment it takes to access their time and expertise. Certain online courses will also inspire you and help you move ahead. Take some courses that will create a diversion as well. As I mentioned, I recently launched Learn Music Again for those who used to play music and want to play again. (mainly piano and voice) Music is a huge stress-reliever, keeping the mind sharp and creates a different community for participants.

When I was President of the not-for-profit National Speakers Ass’n, Los Angeles, I focused on our mission to help speakers build their speaking business. The community and camaraderie that was created was extremely valuable. Find those groups that will create that mutual trust, friendship and training for you.

Healthy Mindset Five: Don't Be Afraid to Fail

This is a big one and one I have faced many times as an innovator and creative. There are the little voices that haunt you when embarking on something new. If you share your vision and plans, then your launch fails, how are you going to feel? Embarrassed? Depressed? At a loss of what to do next?

One thing I know, if you never try, you’ll never succeed. You can’t let fear stop you. For most, this fear never fully goes away, no matter what level you are at. Create a strong vision of where you want to be in 3-5 years and your mission statement to accompany that. For sources how to do this, read Michael Hyatt’s book The Vision Driven Leader. I also like Donald Miller’s Building a Storybrand.

If your messaging and mission is strong, you have a better chance of staying on course, no matter what happens. You can adjust along the way. I sincerely hope this has helped you. Reviewing these principles often definitely help me stay focused and positive.

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1240 words

Deborah Johnson

About the author

DEBORAH JOHNSON, M.A., creator of Hero Mountain® and former president of Los Angeles National Speakers Association, is an international award-winning music artist, author, speaker and National Media Commentator. She also hosts the popular podcast "Women at Halftime." Deborah provides tools to create your ideal lifestyle and work at mid-career or during the halftime of life, getting unstuck. You can live your second half fulfilled, focused and free! Up for multiple GRAMMY Awards and spending over 20 years in the entertainment industry, she's an expert on how to constantly reinvent yourself in a gig-economy. She is also the recipient of the Women's Economic Forum Exceptional Women of Excellence Award. Deborah is the author of multiple books, over twenty albums and musicals and speaks and performs in both live and virtual events.

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