One thing is certain—no one knows how this global pandemic is going to turn out. If someone tells you they think they know what life will look like in a few weeks or months, please don’t believe them. No one knows!
The uncomfortableness of not knowing and the uncertainty of it all can trigger many drama-filled thoughts. Here are just a few we have heard come out of our own mouths, as well as what we hear from our clients:
- “I have to have everything figured out. People are relying on me.”
- “The whole situation seems too big. I get overwhelmed thinking about what is going to happen.”
- “Other people seem to be doing okay. Why am I so stressed?”
All these statements are rooted in the Dreaded Drama Triangle (DDT). In some way or another, the three roles in the DDT show up in those statements: Persecuting yourself for not having it all figured out; feeling like a Victim to the situation so you disengage and do nothing; and looking for a Rescuer to help you sooth your uncomfortable feelings. We’ve even noticed that, personally, inside our own minds, all three DDT roles can happen at the same time!
When things seem too big and complex, we have found embracing the notion of Baby Steps to be crucial.
Baby Steps is a basic concept embedded in the 3rd Vital Question: What actions are you taking? Are you merely reacting to your anxiety in the moment or are you pausing, and taking generative Baby Steps to get you closer to what you care about?
For some, Baby Steps can be translated to simply the “next step.” By whatever name, the magic of simply taking the next step that is yours to do (not someone else’s to do), is a personal empowerment move, especially in extra stressful situations.
There are at least 5 important ways Baby Steps can support you now more than ever. Baby Steps:
- Prevent brain overload. Baby Steps allow your brain to focus on one step at a time, which reduces the stress hormones from hijacking your nervous system. (And there is less chance you will lay awake at night worrying about all the details, which causes even more stress!)
- Protect you from the fear of making mistakes. Your ego can trick you into thinking you are supposed to have a comprehensive plan, which is pretty ridiculous in such uncertain times. Committing to Baby Steps reduces the risk of making a big mistake.
- Leverage the power of the positive feedback loop. Taking a Baby Step, learning and discerning feedback, triggers your innate reward system and can motivate you even more. It’s a law of physics and inertia. Getting into action helps you stay in action, especially when things are scary.
- Propel you from Victim to Creator. When you take responsibility for your actions, you shift from the Victim mindset toward being a Creator. Taking just one small step, that is yours to take, strengthens your true Creator essence.
- Reinforce your human need for social interaction. Taking a Baby Step most likely (not always) involves working with others, whether it is a walk around the block and waving at a neighbor or texting someone to check in. Social distancing is not social disconnection.
Plus, you never know when a Baby Steps will be a giant leap forward!
Let the magic of Baby Steps support you right now more than ever. All you need to focus on is the one step that is right in front of you and you will increase the likelihood of a good outcome.
Stay safe. Stay Healthy. Stay Outcome Focused — One Baby Step at a Time!