It's a strange and difficult time for all of us right now and I myself have found it particularly difficult at times, especially as the lockdown here in the UK began and I felt very anxious for the first couple of weeks.
One of the good things to come out of the anxiety I felt over Coronavirus however, was the changes I've now made to some of my habits. I go into these in more detail in the video above but I will summarise them below.
3 years ago my Dad passed away after developing a very serious condition in his lungs which then also developed into pneumonia. He spent many days in intensive care and requiring a ventilator to breathe. I would visit him in ICU and could see how scared and how much pain he was in. This all came about suddenly and unexpectedly and seeing him suffer like this, knowing he was still the same person inside and was aware of everything, seeing him struggle to breathe and fear for his life was the hardest and most traumatic experience of my life.
When I saw footage on the news of patients in critical care suffering from Covid-19 it was very reminiscent of the experience I went through with my Dad. It brought back that whole experience again and it was all I could think about. I started to worry that either I myself, or another member of my family would catch Coronavirus and go through the same pain and suffering that my Dad did. I did not feel ready to go through that same experience again. This is what lead to my deep anxiety. But it did also lead to some positive changes in my life....
Such was my fear that I would likely catch Covid-19 and that if I did the symptoms would be severe I became very conscious about wanting to keep my immune system as strong as possible, just to better my chances if I did catch it. I've since been eating a lot more freshly cooked meals, eating a more varied, healthy diet, eating a lot less frozen pizzas, I've started taking multivitamins and I haven't even drunk a single beer in around 5 weeks! That's definitely a record!
Following on from that, it's also given me further motivation to keep active and to exercise more regularly. I've exercised to varying levels of degree over the years but in the last year in particular it has been very sporadic. Actually, since I spent a good chunk of last year travelling, I was probably the least active I had been in a long time and my fitness definitely took a big hit. So since returning home I have been keen to start improving my fitness again, but the scare of Coronavirus has definitely given me the extra push and much more motivation than I had earlier.
I guess now, it has given me a clear focus as to why I want to exercise and improve my fitness. As a result, the last few weeks I have been exercising almost every day and my drive for it has been growing the more I do it. It's becoming more enjoyable, I'm becoming more clear about my goals and my vision for my fitness and I can actually slowly feel myself getting a little bit obsessed with it and obsessed with wanting to grow. I've actually just bought a new fitness watch so I can track my growth. I've just bought myself the Polar Ignite and one of the key reasons why I bought this particular fitness tracker was because it is particularly detailed about the level of data and metrics you can track to see how your fitness is growing.
Having the extra time at home, I now also have the time to work on some of the things I've been wanting to do for so long but just haven't found the time, such as improving and updating this website and adding more photos to my stock portfolios.
I'm finally now able to work on those things and as I do so, I'm getting more and more productive, getting more things done and in turn my motivation is also growing as I can see myself achieving and growing in this area too.
I truly feel like, as bad as Coronavirus is, as bad as it is that I can't see friends and family, I can't get out hiking, I can't go out and take photos and do many of the things that I love, despite all of that, I really feel like this is a new beginning for me.
Over the last year or so I was often very frustrated with my life not being where I wanted and things not going the way I'd hoped. I was often playing the victim, reacting to external factors in my life in a negative way. I was pessimistic about my future, felt like I was in a rut and didn't know what I could do to achieve the things I wanted.
I now finally have clarity on my life. I have a clear vision about, not just where I want to get to but how I want to get there. Even more importantly, I am excited about that journey. I'm no longer putting pressure on myself for not yet being close to my end goal, I'm instead excited about the journey of getting there. I can see why things happened the way they did earlier and how many of the things I got upset and frustrated about have actually served me.
For all that things are difficult right now, you can learn and grow from any experience. There is good, there is strength and growth that can be taken from any situation. You just have to look for it and allow it.