Mind 8 min read

Why Jack Daniels, Netflix And Cookies Are No Longer Getting Us Through The Pandemic…And What To Focus On Instead | Kristina Mänd Lakhiani

by Amy White August 24, 2020
The following article was inspired by a Mindvalley University 2020 Live Online talk by Kristina Mänd Lakhiani. Kristina is the Co-Founder of Mindvalley, author of the transformational Quest ‘Live By Your Own Rules’ and a highly celebrated international speaker.

Livin’ La Vida ‘Lockdown’

Do you remember that day?

The day you were told that your country was going ‘into lockdown’?

No hugs from your friends. No spontaneous conversations at the bar. No coffee and cake at your local café. No cinema, theatre or shopping trips. No date night at your favorite Italian restaurant.

All of the external pleasures that gave you a sense of comfort, entertainment and security were gone…

Although you most likely kept your chin up, put on your mask, slapped on some hand-sanitizer, and got on with it, it’s safe to say that few escaped lockdown unscathed. Even the former first lady powerhouse that is Michelle Obama says she’s been dealing with low-grade depression during the pandemic – ‘Spiritually, these are not … fulfilling times,’ she said.

Deep down in the murky pit of collective human emotion, despite appearances, it was clear that most of us struggled, one way or another. Vulnerable, insecure, bored and confused–we were forced to find new ways to fill the void COVID-19 had created.

While cookies, Jack Daniels, and Netflix hit the spot for a while, we all secretly craved the one thing we couldn’t have during lockdown.

The Craving For Certainty

There’s nothing that tastes sweeter to human beings than certainty.

The desire for certainty is encoded into our DNA – it’s the ultimate golden carrot that governs our survival instincts. There’s nothing wrong with that, except the minor issue that security of any kind is an illusion. It’s never fully attainable, and life will prove it to you time and time again.

Uncertainty’, Kristina says, ‘is the only certain thing in life’.

If you’re intimidated by change and have no idea where to start when it comes to embracing uncertain times, you’ve without a doubt come to the right place.

How To Thrive (Not Just Survive) In Uncertain Times

As hard as it is to accept, none of us know what’s going to happen tomorrow.

Accepting uncertainty as part of our lives is something we have to become comfortable with’, Kristina says, ‘…and here’s how’.

Step 1 – Question What You Deem To Be ‘Risky’

A massive anxiety-producing concept is risk-taking. The problem, of course, is often not so much to do with the scenario as it is to do with the uncertainty it brings.  

Kristina busts a classic example of ‘an unsafe choice’:

A lot of people think that becoming an entrepreneur is risky. They say that to be more secure, it’s better to work for someone else. But in fact…being self-employed could technically be a much more secure position in life because you depend on yourself. You’re responsible for your own income. You’re not giving your power away to someone else.

In hindsight, the millions of employees worldwide who have lost their jobs in the unforeseen pandemic would probably agree.

So question your fears. Where did they come from? It’s a topic worth pondering over.

Your worry may well be in vain. And paradoxically, embracing the uncertainty and ‘feeling the fear and doing it anyway’ may lead to a future that’s safer and happier for all involved.

Step 2 – Find Your Fulcrum

Did you ever play on a see-saw as a child?

Imagine it now. You’ve got the two seats, the planks, and the center which enables the fun alternating highs and lows.

That center point is called the ‘fulcrum’.

Just like there’s no game without the fulcrum, there’s no happy life without striking the balance. 

The sturdier the fulcrum, the more confident you can feel as you enjoy the ride. The more solid your physical, mental, and spiritual wellbeing are, the more secure you can feel as you navigate crazy times.

If all parts of yourself are tended to, taken care of and nurtured over time, you’re setting yourself up for success.

Eating well, exercising, meditating and practicing self-care are good places to start.

On the see-saw of life, be your own fulcrum. This new-found balance will provide you with ample ammunition to fend off any fears about uncertainty.

Step 3 –  Uplevel Your Adaptability

Ever heard the saying, ‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’?

Well, according to Kristina, it actually doesn’t.

I think it is the biggest myth in the history of personal growth. Because if that was true, we’d be surrounded by truly evolved, transformed, beautiful human beings. Unfortunately, any psychologist will tell you that a lot of our experiences in life make us traumatized, a little more closed, a little less us, or a little less bright and courageous.’

The good news is, you get to choose how your past shapes you.

Kristina at A-Fest Portugal 2019

Every experience that life gives us is like a turning point in the road, a choice. Every experience in life comes with a possibility of transformation and the possibility of trauma…and both are likely.

If you really want to thrive in uncertain times, make the choice to adapt and embrace your challenges, with the firm intention of allowing them to transform you.

As Kristina explains in her personal growth formula:
Experience + Consciousness = Transformation.
So ask yourself, how can I make the best out of this experience and grow through what I go through?

Step 4 –  Build A Sturdy Lighthouse

The clearer your goals, the more streamlined your focus can be, and the more likely you are to achieve them. Kristina refers to these goals and aspirations as ‘lighthouses’, acting as guiding lights that help you navigate the rough seas of uncertainty.

That isn’t to say we should become too attached to our plans, but instead use them as inspiration for what step to take next.

Our lighthouses may be thrashed by strong tides and blown by rough winds, but nevertheless, the guiding light remains. ‘Your dreams can still stay, even if the circumstances change’, Kristina says.

Having a ‘why’, knowing where you want to go, and having something to look forward to is important. Let your clarity comfort you in times of chaos.  

Growing Into Happiness

Embracing life’s uncertainties with openness and courage is a way of thinking that will not only see you through the pandemic, but throughout your whole life.

But the inspiration to grow into happiness isn’t going to come from something outside yourself, by external validation or moments of pleasure. In Kristina’s experience, the only way to truly embrace life and be happy is to keep growing and live authentically…by your own rules.

That’s where Mindvalley Quest All Access comes in. With unlimited access to Mindvalley’s entire vault of online transformational courses, the sky’s the limit in terms of your growth, confidence, consciousness and adaptability.

If you’re interested in Kristina’s Quest ‘Live By Your Own Rules’ and her ‘7 Days to Happiness’ mini-course, along with our ever-growing collection of personal growth content, click here.

Follow Kristina on Instagram as well for more of her updates!

by Amy White
As a personal growth writer, therapist, and yoga/meditation coach, Amy’s mission is to help humanity find moments of inner peace and self-love. Amy co-runs the online Women’s Wellness Circle based in the UK that is dedicated to providing emotional support to women healing from chronic illness. Sister. Friend. Dancer. Traveling culture vulture. Multilingual extrovert. Liberal hug giver.

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