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How to Handle Negativity on Social Media?

Social Media is a big part of 21st century life. Using it has brought benefits to its users, however using social media has a lot of negative effects including social isolation, anxiety and depression.

In this week’s blog I’ll be discussing how to handle negativity on social media.

What is Social Media?   


Websites and applications that enable users to participate in a social network or enable users to create and share content.

What are the different types of social media?


There are many types of social media including:

  • Social Networks: Websites that enable users to communicate with each other by posting information, comments, images and messages.
  • Micro blogging: Sites that enable anyone to post comments to a micro blog that attracts an audience.
  • Photo Sharing: Sites that enable users to share digital photos online.
  • Video Sharing: Online video platforms such as YouTube enable users to upload, convert, store and playback video content on the internet.

What is social media used for?

The purpose of social media platforms are to help users connect, share and give information and connect with millions of other users. It’s important not to ignore social media, since it is an important part of our lives today.

Social media platforms include many social components that include the common fields that you share with other users. In business, social media is used to market products and promote brands. Almost 80% of small businesses use social media to attract new customers and it can also help you validate your brand. 

It’s estimated that 3.5 billion people worldwide use social media. That’s 45% of the world’s population. As of 2019 an additional 360 million people started using social media.

What Are The Advantages Of Social Media Use?


Advantages Include:

  • Marketing Tool: Social media can be used for marketing a business. Since so many adults use social media it is a great opportunity to get leads.
  • Self Education: Social media platforms such as YouTube have revolutionized how we educate ourselves. Whether it’s a video blog (vlog) or an instructional video posted by a college professor social media has changed how we learn. 
  • Build Relationships: At its root the purpose of social media is about connecting people to people. From a professional standpoint is used tremendously to connect with colleagues, mentors, role models and other professionals. As you build these relationships there are opportunities to tap into new networks that may open up new opportunities.
  • Share your Expertise: Social media is a great opportunity to talk about what you know. Sharing your expertise can attract potential professional and personal connections.

What Are The Negative Effects Of Social Media?

Negative Effects Include:

  • Depression and Anxiety: A major consequence of social media is the rise in the number of users who suffer from mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety. This may sound paradoxical that social media is intended to connect people to people, but at the same time perpetuate depression and anxiety through feeling of disconnection and loneliness.
  • Cyberbullying: A person can be bullied by another person on social media by sending messages that are intimidating or threatening.
  • FOMO (Fear of Missing Out): We all get anxious when we see something more exciting or interesting going on in someone else’s life. Along with feeling anxious we can feel jealous and angry when we think we’re missing out.
  • Internet Addiction: Overtime the use of social media can turn into an addiction. 
  • Unhealthy Sleep Patterns: The overuse of social media via electronic devices such as laptops, smartphones and tablets can disrupt your circadian rhythm by tricking your body into thinking the sun is still out and not product melatonin. 
  • Negative Body Image: Social media can cause a user to have a negative or distorted body image as they start comparing themselves with other users. 
  • Unrealistic Expectations About Life: Social media is something many people now rely on for receiving validation about their lives. Social media paints a picture of what life should be like and we become addicted to posting the perfect post in order to receive likes. 
  • The Spread Of Misinformation: Many people already feel depressed and anxious watching the news. Due to the spreading of misinformation from a news outlet embellishing a story to get ratings and users posting misinformation on social media. People are now more depressed and anxious than ever before when they turn the news on, because they’re not sure about whether the story is real or not.

How to deal with Negativity?

The negative effects of social listed above can have a detrimental effect on many users. This has resulted in the rise of cyber bullies called trolls.

What is a Troll?

A Troll is an internet slag term that describes a person that starts quarrels or upsets people on social media by posting inflammatory and generally off topic messages with the intent of provoking negative responses from readers.

Once you have a presence on social media, it’s really hard to totally avoid negative reviews and comments whether they’re written by a Troll or not. I’ve learned through experience that it’s important that negativity is handled in a way that it won’t escalate.

When negativity escalates on social media it can have a long lasting impact on your brand. I’ve learned through participating in Facebook forums that negativity can quickly get out of hand if you are dealing with a cyberbully that’s trying to bait you. How you respond makes a difference, if you give in to the baiting and respond in the wrong way you may attract more negative people that will hurt your brand.

I personally feel less anxious when I don’t get involved with negativity.

Tips For Handling Negativity On Social Media?

Here are some tips for handling negativity on social media:

  • Be empathetic: Learn to recognize that the negative person may be going through something and use social media to vent their problems. Learn how to see things from their point of view.
  • Acknowledge the issue: Before the situation escalates it’s important to acknowledge the issue that’s causing someone to be negative. If it’s being caused by something you’ve done or someone is not satisfied with a product you’re offering take responsibility for it and apologize.
  • Offer a solution: A negative person may be feeling helpless,  scared and frustrated. Offering a solution can help keep a negative situation from spiraling out of control. 
  • Take it offline: Talk to the negative person privately through private messaging.
  • Ban or block them: In a worse case scenario if all options were considered and the negativity continues to escalate out of control you may have to ban or block that person.

How do you use social media?

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Overcoming Limiting Beliefs

Limiting beliefs was the topic of my previous blog post. They’re assumptions or perceptions about ourselves and the world around us that constrain us in some way. They shape our lives and they cause problems for our mental health, but we can overcome limiting beliefs.

How Are Limiting Beliefs Shaped?

These Include:

  • Past Trauma
  • Family Belief Systems
  • Relationships With Friends or Significant Others

It was past trauma caused by bullying and betrayal while growing up. However, I took steps to overcome that limiting belief.

Identifying The Limiting Belief

The first step I took was to identify a limiting belief that wasn’t serving me, “I can’t be my real self or I’ll be judged”. When I was growing up it was a struggled to fit in when I was in school.

The long-term effects of bullying include experiencing a wide range of emotions. These include feeling angry, bitterness, vulnerable, helplessness, frustrated, lonely and being isolated from your peers. The longer you’re bullied the odds of being depressed and anxious increases. Also, you develop self-esteem issues and can lead to social anxiety.

I wrote a post about how to overcome social anxiety. If you like to view it please click on the button below. This post describes social anxiety in more detail and on a deeper level.

Challenge The Limited Belief

The next step was to challenge my limiting belief. I started to become aware that it was not factual, I just believed it was factual. For example I believed that a friendship would fall apart just like when I was in school.

I examined the so-called facts and found that I blew them out of proportion and shaped them to form a false narrative.

When this happened I started to overcome social anxiety by questioning that false narrative.

Replace The Limiting Belief

The next step is to replace your old limiting belief with a new one. I’m using my own experience as an example. I identified and challenged my belief, “I can’t be my self or I’ll be judged”, and replaced it with, “It isn’t my job to please other people”. By doing this you’ll feel like a different person, however it’s important to strengthen your new belief.

How To Strengthen Your New Empowering Belief?

Our beliefs shape our identities and our behaviors. Also, our habits as well.

When you’re transitioning into your new belief you may feel fear and resistance. This may trigger an automatic urge to do an old habit. For example, if the transition is difficult you may find yourself engaging in negative self-talk such as “This is impossible” or “What’s the point” and then give up.

It’s interesting to note that giving up is not a habit. However, you may not be aware that you’re giving up because of habits such as fear of failure, underestimating yourself or others, procrastination or laziness.

When you become aware of these habits it’s important to identify them, challenge them and replace them. For example if you’re underestimating yourself it’s best to look into why you see yourself in that way. Then take action toward changing this habit by assessing your strengths, weaknesses and talents that make you more aware of your abilities or skill up your abilities.

Conclusion

When you’re overcoming limiting beliefs it’s important to not only identify, challenge and replace the belief, but also to change bad habits that get in the way of your new empowering belief.

If you’re suffering from anxiety please click on the button below and download my free anxiety expert guide:

Sources: 

https://personalexcellence.co/blog/limiting-beliefs/

https://www.verywellfamily.com/bullying-impact-4157338

https://www.fastcompany.com/3058647/5-habits-to-get-over-self-limiting-beliefs

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Limiting Beliefs In A Nutshell

In my previous post the topic was about improving your unhealthy self-perception. However, I’d like to discuss something that’s a reflection of how you see yourself. I’m referring to limiting beliefs.

When you perceive or see yourself in a healthy way you’re more aware of who you are as a person. For example you’re more aware of your strengths, weaknesses, talents and potential and you take responsibilities for your thoughts and actions.

However, when you see yourself in an unhealthy way you’re more likely to be unsure of yourself and your abilities. This can manifest itself as a toxic belief system that inhibits your growth as a person.

If you want to refer back to my last post, please click on the button below:

What Are Limiting Beliefs?

Limiting beliefs are assumptions or perceptions about ourselves and the world around us that constrain us in some way.

We’re unaware that we end up impoverishing our lives when we follow these beliefs and this is due to a number of negative effects. They can keep us from making good decisions, taking advantage of new opportunities or reaching our full potential. 

Limiting beliefs leave you stuck in a negative state of mind. They prevent you from living the life you want. However, have you wondered where limiting beliefs come from?

Where Do Limiting Beliefs Come From?

Different things that happen in our lives shape our limiting beliefs. 

Things that shape limiting beliefs include the following: 

Past Trauma: Something traumatic that happens to you as a child can remain stuck in your psyche. When this happens it’s like a record that skips and stops you in the same place over and over.

Your Family’s Belief System: The belief system of your family plays a role in how you view and interact with the world. For example if you’re from a family that values playing it safe in life you might be convinced that you’re not good enough to any other path.

Expectations From Family: You’re raised with certain expectations. For example you’re expected to go to college and get a 9 to 5 after graduation because it’s a safe option. However, you’re more interested in starting your own business, but underlying guilt about meeting expectations and fear of judgement from family can leave you feeling stuck.

Relationships With Friends and Significant Others: Limiting beliefs can impact how you view the world. For example if you were bullied as a child in school, betrayed by a friend or were cheated on by a significant other it causes you to see all people as untrustworthy.

Types Of Limiting Beliefs

According to Inc.com there are 3 types of limiting beliefs. 

Unhealthy Beliefs About Yourself:

When you conclude that you’re a failure that won’t amount to anything in life, this belief will prevent you from being your best self.

Unhealthy Beliefs About Others:

There are limiting beliefs about everyone being out to get you, everyone is untrustworthy or manipulative it can be impossible to develop relationships.

Unhealthy Beliefs About The World:

If you believe that you can’t succeed, because the world is unfair and scary, then it will take a toll on you and make you feel stuck.

In my next post I’ll be offering tips for changing your limiting beliefs and this will include the story of my personal transformation after changing mine.

Have You Ever Had Limiting Beliefs?

Please Like and Comment!

If you’re suffering from anxiety please click on the button below to download my free anxiety expert guide:

Sources:

http://changingminds.org/explanations/belief/limiting_beliefs.htm

https://business.tutsplus.com/tutorials/what-are-self-limiting-beliefs–cms-31607

https://www.lifehack.org/858652/limiting-beliefs

https://www.inc.com/amy-morin/3-types-of-unhealthy-beliefs-that-will-drain-your-mental-strength-make-you-less-effective.html

https://tomillama.com/blog/limiting-beliefs

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Is Mass Media Feeding Your Anxiety? Version 2.0


How Do You Feed Your Anxiety?

I mentioned in a previous post about the fear of the unknown. It occurs when we’re faced with something that’s unfamiliar or something we don’t understand. 

We become anxious about what that unknown thing means for our lives; most of us cope by exercising, listening to music or connecting with friends. However, there are some people who seek out information in an effort to resolve their anxiety; it may or may not be true and sometimes it ends up being misinformation that causes us to become more anxious toward that unknown thing they fear.

Misinformation refers to false or inaccurate information. Sometimes its due to errors or inaccuracies caused by false rumors, insults, pranks or embellishment; other times it’s due to disinformation caused by the deliberate falsehood by design and this includes malicious content such as hoaxes or propaganda.

If you’re feeling anxious please click on the link below and download my free anxiety expert guide:

What are the Sources of Misinformation?

Misinformation along with disinformation and propaganda has been around as long as mass communication; which began with the development of the printing press at the end of the 14th century. 

In today’s world we are constantly bombarded with mass media including the mainstream media and social media.

The mainstream media consists of news organizations and their websites. They are always competing with each other for ratings or views and they’ve always embellished news stories.

To embellish something is to add something more interesting or entertaining to add extra details to a news story, especially the ones that are not true.

Due to the rise of internet news organizations along with social media mainstream media news organizations have seen a decline in ratings among the coveted 18 to 49 year old age demographic. Not only news media, but television viewership in general. Declining viewership had meant declining quality in the form of embellishment.

Social media is emerging as the main source of news online; along with other digital technologies. Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have allowed journalists to instantly report just by using their smartphones.

Over 77 million Americans have a social media profile. Being on social media allows you to easily connect with a large audience. It’s an effortless way to connect with like minded people regardless of location with just a single click.

Observers often lack the skills and motivation to interview participants to get the full unvarnished story. This can lead to the reporting of news that’s often distorted by the observers built-in bias (prejudice), intended to inflame public opinion or to play down the impact of an event known only to the observer.

More often than not social media will only give you news and information tailored to what it thinks you want to read about.

What are the Consequences of Misinformation?

The effects of misinformation on your mental health is the same as gaslighting.

Gaslighting is described as a form of manipulation and control in which a victim is systematically and deliberately fed false information that leads them to question their own self-worth and even their sanity. It can occur as a form of emotional abuse in our personal and professional relationships, but overtime misinformation  from the media can have the same effect.

Constantly being fed false information can contribute to a victim’s sense of hopelessness and confusion and lead to mental health problems such as anxiety and depression.

An example of gaslighting by the media has been the news coverage of the Coronavirus.

According to scientists we know that the Coronavirus is officially called COVID-19; it comes from the same family of viruses as the common cold. 

COVID-19 is a new strain that has not been identified in humans; it’s zoonotic meaning its transmitted between animals and humans.

It’s recommended that to prevent the infection from spreading you need to wash your hands more frequently, cover your mouth when you cough and sneeze and to avoid close contact with anyone showing any of the symptoms listed above.

Since COVID-19 is a disease that was not previously known it’s only natural that people all over the world are experiencing anxiety and fear. I mentioned in a previous post about the fear of the unknown; it is a human instinct intended to protect you from potential threats. 

The amount of anxiety people are experiencing varies widely; since there’s an absence of clear cut resolutions many people are worrying and trying seek out more information in an effort to relieve their anxiety.

However, people seek information through the news; whether it’s through mainstream media or social media. The news is either embellished to exaggerate the story in order to get you to watch it more or the information is full of errors and inaccuracies that cause you to be in a constant state of confusion and make you feel hopeless as your anxiety worsens.

The constant negative news coverage has led to a form of collective gaslighting that’s making us more anxious than we have to be.

In a previous post I discussed the positive and negative effects of the internet and if your interested in reading that post please click below:

Don’t Want To Feed Into Your Fears? Here’s What To Do?

Focus On What You Can Control: If you’re feeling anxious and you’re seeing to resolve those feelings. Instead of using news media to try to resolve anxious thoughts you refocus your attention on what you can control, because to tell you the truth you have no control over things that are either happening or will happen. However, you are in control of how you react to what’s happening or to what you fear. 

Be Mindful That You’re Not The Only One Feeling Anxious: It’s comforting to know that you are not the only ones feeling anxious. If you’re looking to resolve your anxiety you’re better off talking about it with other people.

Mindfulness Meditation: The misinformation spread by the media can make it feel like reality is being distorted. Mindfulness Meditation helps you stay aware of what’s really going on; it protects your mental health and increases your attention span, along with helping out with slowing down racing thoughts and overwhelming feelings of anxiety.

Limit The Amount of Time You Consume Media: Limiting how much media you consume has many benefits including having a better ability to focus, having a greater sense of self-awareness and improved mental illness. It’s estimated that more than half of Americans experience stress and anxiety from watching the news, so reducing how much you watch is a positive.

Be Mindful About The Accuracy of The Information You Have: Start by empowering yourself with accurate information by fact-checking every piece of journalism you read and every headline you share on social media.

Have You Ever Felt More Anxious Trying To Find Answers To What You Fear?

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Feeling Stuck In Life (Part.2): Tips For Overcoming Stuckness

In my previous post I was discussing what it meant to feel stuck in life and why you feel stock. In today’s post I’ll be offering practical tips for overcoming the feeling of stuckness.

Why Do Some People Stay Stuck?

Many people end up staying stuck and unhappy for many reasons.

Reasons may include liking or depending on the financial stability that their job provides, they may fear change or fear failure and they may not have the education or resources to make a change.

However, there are some simple and realistic ways of getting unstuck.

Tips For Becoming Unstuck

Letting Go Of The Past: Holding on to the past, whether it’s unresolved baggage from a bad relationship, a past job or from a bad financial decision can cause us to sabotage ourselves when we start asking ourselves “What If” questions. If we look back at these memories and learn from them then let them go we can set ourselves free from baggage.

Change Your Perspective:  After letting go of the past it helps to take a break from your current situation whether you like to hike, go fishing or meditate to clear your mind in order to gain a new perspective about your life. You’ll notice that you no longer feel stuck when you learn how to perceive your life in a different way.

Take Baby Steps: Remember that small baby steps can become big things. For example, you can start reflecting on your life and start working toward what you truly want, instead of what other people want.

Explore Your Purpose: Your life purpose is what makes you feel alive. I’m referring to the you’re passionate about including a job that you enjoy doing, helping others reach their full potential or growing as a human.

Consider Hiring A Life Coach: The benefits of hiring a life coach include getting help with providing clarity, commitment and visioning your success, along with encouraging self-reflection and providing strategies and goals to suit your needs.

Learn How To Believe In Yourself Again: We learn how to believe in ourselves as we develop the courage to face inevitable obstacles, rather than getting discouraged and feeling defeated when an obstacle knocks us down.

Practice Being Hopeful: We might feel stuck, because of feelings of protective pessimism brought on by having a lot of disappointments in your life. However, when you need to change and overcome this negative way of thinking it helps to practice something that inspires hope. These include meditation, prayer or reading inspirational books.

Seek Professional Help: Some people might feel stuck because of an underlying mental health problem such as depression. I know from experience that episodes of depression can cause a change in how you perceive your life. If this is a problem that persists see a medical professional.

Conclusion 

The topic of today’s post came up a lot in conversations among my peers. Some of them are deeply indebted because of student loans, some are struggling to find affordable housing to buy or rent and others feel like they’re stuck because of lack of job satisfaction. 

There have been plenty of times in my life in which I felt stuck. I felt stuck after graduating college, because of underemployment and unsure about whether my chosen field was a good fit. I ended up going back to night school to study subjects such as college physics, computer programming and biology. Taking this small step eventually led to a better job. Its possible to not feel stuck anymore when you have the willingness to take action regardless of your situation.

Have You Gotten Stuck in Your Life?

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If your struggling with anxiety please click on the link below and download my free anxiety expert guide:

Sources:

https://www.simplemindfulness.com/letting-go-is-hard/

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Turning Your Story Into A Blog (Part. 2): Tips For New Bloggers

In this post I’ll be offering tips for anyone who wants to start blogging.

Why Do People Blog?

When I was starting the blog I was asking myself this question. Why Do People Blog?

There are many reasons why people blog including:

Blogging About Their Passion: If you feel strongly about an issue or topic and you want to bring attention to it, then it’s a good idea to start a blog and attract an audience you can reach out to.

Sharing Their Expertise: If you’re a blogger with the heart of a teacher and you have some knowledge of a subject, you may blog in order to share that know-how with your audience.

Share Their Experiences: Some bloggers like to post about the progress they’ve made while learning something new. Whether, you’re learning how to bake a cake or learning how to manage a chronic health condition.

Express Themselves: A simple reason why some people blog is to express themselves. Some use blogging as a way to practice their writing with an actual audience as a way to try different writing styles and formats, and to express themselves creatively. However, there are others that use their blogs as a way to entertain an audience, whether they’re writing humorous posts or writing about life in general.

Process Their Thoughts: Blogging, like journaling helps us organize our thoughts that are usually a jumbled up mess until we either write them down or type them out.

To Write A Book: There are a lot of authors that create and share their content in shorter form blog posts. Overtime, they’ll compile and edit these into a book manuscript.

Blogging To Find Others: Blogging is an opportunity to connect with people who are interested in the same thing. Overtime you can build a community made up of your ideal reader.

Make Money: There are some bloggers that make money blogging. It’s not necessarily a form of passive income or a get-rich-quick method. However, if you put the time and the effort into your blog you can make a side income or a full-time living from it.

Getting Started

Here is a link you should click on when you want to start your blog:

https://firstsiteguide.com/start-blog/

When I first started blogging I chose a topic that was a personal interest of mine, which was CBD oil. Due to anxiety and stress brought on by bipolar disorder and sleep apnea I was having sleep issues, so I used CBD oil as a sleep aid. 

This first post gave me some idea of what my niche was going to be. A niche is a specific group of people or a specific market you want to reach with your blog. My niche has different segments including individuals that suffer from anxiety and other mental health issues, those who want to improve themselves and those who advocate for holistic health.

I started to post more frequently and attracted a bigger audience overtime.

Tips For New Bloggers

Since starting my there have been a lot of ups and downs and there were things that I learned by accident or through trial and error. 

Here are some tips for new bloggers:

Getting Ideas From Your Audience: I get emails all the time from subscribers who either have questions for me or a lot of them have ideas for future blog posts.

Understand Your Audience: As you get to know your audience better you start having a better idea of what blog content will resonate with them. I like to post engaging quotes on facebook and Instagram as a way to test blog ideas. If my audience responds well to it, then its a great topic to write about.

 Build a Relationship With Your Audience: As a blogger you’ll get obsessed with finding new readers. However, you might end up ignoring or neglecting the readers you already have, so it’s important to spend time each day engaging with your audience and building relationships.

Build Your Email List: Since the blog was launched I started building an email list. Even if you’re not selling products, having an email list allows you to promote your new content to your audience directly. Also, your email list becomes your community and caring for them by writing for them and delivering value to them should be your number one goal.

Post Regularly: It’s important to note that it’s easier to lose blog traffic than it is to build it up. Bloggers that post on a regular basis (more than once a week) added subscribers over twice as fast as those bloggers that added content once a month. 

Keep It Short: When I started blogging I posted blog posts that were 3 pages or more. I learned that when a post runs too long my audience may lose interest and you should be aware that there are thousands of other posts competing for their attention. It’s important that your posts are short (minimum of 300 words) and straight to the point.

Give It Time: Blogging is the wrong path if you’re looking for a quick path to wealth and recognition. Plan to invest in blogging for a long time before you see a return. If you can stick it out for years without results and you have a willingness to learn and make improvements to your blog along the way you can achieve something awesome.

Have You Ever Considered Writing a Blog?

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If you’re struggling with anxiety please click on the button below and download my free anxiety expert guide:

Sources:

https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?ContentID=4552&ContentTypeID=1

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Social Media’s Role In Pandemic

It’s interesting to see the human response to the COVID-19 pandemic. I’ve already discussed how being on lockdown is leading to more active sex lives, how some people cope with their anxiety through being creative and how some people are helping others in this crisis.

In part.4 I’ll be discussing how people respond to the pandemic through social media.

What is Social Media?

Social media is a term that used to describe websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking. Social media platforms include Facebook, Instagram and Zoom.

Social Media! A Curse or a Blessing?

The consumption of social media has increased since the beginning of the pandemic. The role of social media has been paradoxical since this crisis started. It’s been a curse and a blessing at the same time.

It’s been a curse due to the large amount of misinformation about the pandemic that’s feeding into our anxiety. Also, before this crisis it was well documented that overuse of social media has been linked to low self-esteem, anxiety and depression.

However social media has been a blessing for many reasons as well.

Why is Social Media A Blessing?

Reasons Social Media is a Blessing Include:

  • Crowdsourcing: This involves seeking knowledge, goods or services from a large body of people through social media. Crowdsourcing is being used by organizations and individuals to raise funds to purchase Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
  • A Marketing Platform: Despite some companies preying on the COVID-19 mass hysteria, there are others providing powerful and empathetic responses to this crisis. The main responsibility of brands right now is to provide for the safety and wellbeing for not only their employees, but their customers as well.
  • A Source of Information: We never had more real time information available in the face of a worldwide event until now. Social media provides information that can provide us with a better understanding of what’s occurring and how it might impact us.
  • Virtual Medicine: Virtual medicine is helping to make access to healthcare more convenient and help those who are most vulnerable. People can see and talk to a doctor through their smartphone, tablet or computer instead of visiting the doctor’s office. 
  • Keep In Touch With Family And Friends: Platforms such as Zoom make it easier to connect with family and friends remotely. Due to lockdown and social distancing many people can’t see their loved ones face-to-face, so they’re connecting via social media. 
  • Working-At-Home: Social media is being used to keep remote workers connected with their employers while on lockdown. 

Do You Use Social Media More While Under Lockdown?

Please Like and Comment!

If you’re having problems with anxiety please click on the button below and download your free anxiety expert guide:

Sources:

https://techxplore.com/news/2020-03-social-media-positive-possibilities-pandemic.html

https://khoros.com/blog/social-medias-role-during-covid-19

https://newsroom.uhc.com/open-enrollment/virtual-visits.html

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The Pandemic Response (Part. 3): People Helping People

In the past month the COVID-19 pandemic has dominated the news 24/7. It’s very interesting to see the human response to this crisis.

Breaking Apart and Coming Together

Regardless of what background you’re from, humanity is breaking apart and at the same time coming together. 

Some people push others out of the way at the grocery store, however there are people helping others in need and work together with them to achieve a common goal. 

I’ll be discussing how people are helping other people in the COVID-19 crisis.

What Are The Benefits of People Helping People?

It’s interesting that there are many benefits derived from helping other people. It’s not only a benefit to the people you are helping, but it can benefit you as well.

Volunteering your time to help other people has been linked to improved happiness, health and sense of well being.

Health benefits derived from volunteering include reduction in chronic pain, lowered blood pressure and a mental boost from connecting with your community while social distancing.

People Are Helping By:

Helping Neighbors Under Quarantine: It’s easy to fall back into old habits when you hang out with people who are perpetually negative and bring you down every time they’re around. I’ve learned to associate less with people who bring me down and associate with people that are upbeat and build me up.

Volunteers Donating Blood: All over the world there’s a blood shortage being made worse by the COVID-19 lockdown, blood drives being cancelled and people being afraid to make donations due to the fear of catching the virus. Despite everything that’s been going on many COVID-19 survivors are donating blood plasma to help seriously ill patients fight the virus.

Donating To Local Food Banks: The massive lockdown put in place to fight COVID-19 has caused mass layoffs and led to a high demand for food aid. I saw a news story about a food bank in Texas that served 10,000 families in a single day, which put a huge strain on their food supplies due to huge demand. Food banks across not only the United States, but across the world are under a lot of stress, so a lot of people including myself are making donations to local food banks. 

Engineers Offering Aid To Hospitals: When the pandemic began in March Italy was hit hard by COVID-19. Hospitals were experiencing shortages of not only PPE, but also important disposable ventilator parts such as venturi valves. An Italian start-up called Isinnova figured out how to reverse engineer venturi valves and then manufacture them using a 3-D Printer. 

Volunteers Making PPE For Medical Staff: The global demand for PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) due to the ongoing pandemic has caused a severe shortage of items such as face masks for medical staff. Volunteers have gotten together under the guidance of the  CDC (Centers For Disease Control & Prevention) to sew masks.

Have You Ever Volunteered Your Time?

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Source:

https://www.americamagazine.org/faith/2020/03/18/good-and-beautiful-things-ive-seen-amid-coronavirus-pandemic

https://www.asme.org/topics-resources/content/coronavirus-update-engineers-to-the-rescue

https://www.upworthy.com/san-antonio-food-bank-swamped

http://www.forthoodsentinel.com/living/covid-19-pandemic-causes-blood-donation-shortage/article_a66dda02-7364-11ea-9921-1be5db86de13.html

https://www.wsj.com/articles/coronavirus-survivors-keep-up-the-fight-donate-blood-plasma-to-others-11585733401

https://www.dartmouth-hitchcock.org/patient-education/sewing-masks.html

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The Pandemic Response (Part.2): Being Creative While In Lock-down

The human response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been an interesting one; one of the most interesting aspects has been the role of art in helping people cope.

This is a difficult time for all of us and it’s really easy to fall into a pit of despair. However, it’s important to learn to see a silver lining; being in quarantine or lock down can be really scary and boring, but at the same time it’s an opportunity to indulge in self-exploration.

Creative Coping

Since COVID-19 was declared a pandemic on March 11th followed by a lockdown that resulted in not only the lockdown of individuals, but also the postponing or cancelling of mass gatherings such as ball games and concerts. I’ve noticed more people are coping with their stress and anxiety by being creative. 

Creative Coping Includes:

Art: Despite the cultural sector slowing down to a halt, some people hunkering down in self quarantine have turned to art to pass the time. Forms of art, such as painting may seem trivial, but they can offer a powerful means of connection and a welcome escape from the disorienting present.

Writing: Isolation or quarantine is a great time to prioritize your mental and physical wellbeing, along with being productive. In the early 1600’s London was under a lockdown due to a bubonic plague pandemic, which led to the closing of the famous ‘King’s Men Theatre’ that William Shakespere was a shareholder in. While in quarantine Shakespere put all of his creative energy to ride out the pandemic by writing what would become his most famous works such as ‘King Lear’ and ‘Macbeth’.

Cooking: Some people I know have passed the time while in quarantine by baking and cooking. Quarantine cooking is more than just feeding yourself, it’s also about providing entertainment and relaxation.

Playing and Writing Music: During lockdown a lot of musicians are turning to social media to broadcast their music.

Photography: This is an interesting hobby to have, especially when you want to capture images of the pandemic while social distancing.

Writing For Anxiety Relief

I’m an essential full-time employee who’s not working from home. I see the silver lining in this, because if I had to be on total lock down my mental health would be a lot worse. However, during my down time after work I’ve been writing more due to the stress and anxiety caused by the pandemic.

Pandemic or no pandemic writing is a creative outlet I’ve been using since I was growing up. I’ve noticed overtime that the more stress builds up in my life the more I want to write, so due to the pandemic I’ve been very busy writing.

I’ve been working on a big project along with the blog and when I’m finished with it I’ll be launching it at the end of this month.

You have all been such an awesome audience and my big project is intended to help you become a better you.

What Have You Done While In Lock Down?

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Sources:

https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/620764/productive-people-in-quarantine

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Making Leading Edge Decisions

What Does It Mean To Make A Decision?

What is Decision Making? It’s the process of deciding something based on a logical choice from available options.

When we’re trying to make a decision we take a look at the positives and negatives of the options available, along with considering the possible alternatives. 

After looking at the available options we also must be able to forecast the outcome of the final decision. 

An important factor that’s overlooked that affects decision making is being aware or mindful of our own thoughts and emotions.

Why is Good Decision Making Important?

The cornerstone of good leadership skills is the ability to make a decision and stick to it.

Decision making is an ongoing process in every business regardless of size and also in our personal lives as well. 

Having critical thinking skills allows us to approach a problem and decide on a solution that is beneficial to not only yourself, but to other members of your organization or those close to you in your personal life.

What Influences Our Decisions?

There are a lot of factors that we’re not aware of that can influence the decisions we’re making.

These factors include:

Our Thoughts and Emotions: Our own thoughts and emotions can affect our decisions, not only the nature of those decisions, but also the speed in which they’re made. If your judgement is off due to negative thoughts that lead to anger and make you impatient and cause you to make rash decisions.

Being Hungry: It’s interesting that feelings or states of being can spill over from one area to another. This occurs a lot with our physical desires, for example when we feel hungry or thirsty it can affect the decision areas of our brains. We can feel more desire for big rewards and this can motivate us to make higher risk choices and keep wanting more.

Quality of Ventilation: This is important, because the physical environment can have an effect on our physical and mental health along with our cognitive health. For example when the level of CO2 in your workplace is increased it can cause a decrease in cognitive and mental abilities and lead to poor decision making. It’s a good idea that your work environment has adequate ventilation and plants to decrease CO2 levels.

Number of Choices: Sometimes our ability to make decisions can be affected by the number of choices we have in front of us. When we’re presented with two or more choices it’s easy to look at the pros and cons of each choice. However, if we’re bombarded with endless choices whether we’re car shopping, using dating apps or entertainment apps it leads to a paradox of choice than makes decision making more difficult.

Past Experiences: This is an interesting one. Past experiences can impact present and future decision making. These include events that happened when you’re younger that shape the way you think, act and interact with people close to you.

Familiarity: Making decisions based on factors that are familiar with is deeply entrenched in our minds without being aware of it. We not only like things we’re familiar with, but we fear and judge anything that is different.

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How Being Mindful Leads To Better Decision Making?

Decision making is not always as simple as saying “yes” or “no” and it’s not always a thoughtful or cognitive exercise, instead it can be an impulsive reaction to satisfy immediate needs.

We make decisions everyday about what we eat, when we leave for work, how often we check our smartphones or what assignment to complete. We also make crucial decisions that affect ourselves and others. Many people are not aware how important day-to-day decisions really are until they make the wrong ones. 

Sometimes we fear the unknown so much that we make bad decisions due to fear and anxiety.

Conventional decision making can only take you so far, so it’s important to learn about mindfulness.

Mindfulness is the practice of focusing on the moment-to-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations and the environment around us.

Mindfulness is one of the most powerful tools for understanding your mind and focusing your attention. It can be applied in many ways including:

Mindful Breathing:  Mindfulness involves focusing your attention on your breathing. When you’re focusing on the rise and fall of your chest or the sensation through your nostrils your breath becomes an object of concentration when you start becoming aware of your mind’s tendency to jump from one thought to another.

Finding Your Purpose: Mindfulness makes you more aware of your purpose which leads to a greater sense of direction, a valued sense of self and a more meaningful life. Once you know your purpose you get to decide whether saying “yes” or “no” to a decision will ultimately serve your purpose.

Making Informed Decisions: Mindfulness can make the decision making process a thoughtful and cognitive exercise by making us aware of our impulsivity. For example, it’s important to be informed of the full impact of a decision before it’s made rather than be impulsive and regret your decision.

Finding Balance Between the Heart and the Brain: Overtime we’ve become more reliant on the human brain alone for day to day decisions. It was never meant to be the main source of wisdom and decision making. It has tendencies to push the human body past healthy limits and may result in fear, doubt and insecurities. In my previous post I mentioned that mindfulness puts an emphasis on dropping into your heart space, by doing that the brain and heart balance each other out. The brain receives the information that we make decisions from and the heart incorporates wisdom to help make good decisions.

What Do You Do Before Making Decisions?

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Sources:

https://open.buffer.com/decision-making/

https://www.bachremedies.com/en-us/emotional-health-blog/how-do-our-emotions-affect-decision-making

https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/the-psychology-of-choice

https://www.customerservicemanager.com/decision-making/

https://ggia.berkeley.edu/practice/mindful_breathing

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/tracking-wonder/201902/mindful-approach-decision-making