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Two More Years??

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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

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Remember Steve Siebold? The fatlosers.com guy? That website seems to be down for now, but many of us long-term Sparkies worked our way through his (then free) 24 day Mental Toughness approach to weight control. Once or even more than once.

Siebold was definitely an important way station for me along the path to finding my own way (weigh?) Although he himself joked that many people dropped out of fatlosers.com about day four or so. ("If you're fat it's your fault!" and all the stuff about how your clients and customers and colleagues really view you if you're over weight. Not to mention your spouse or partner!!) Gosh, he's tough.

And fatlosers was just a side gig for him: he's been focused for decades on making big bucks coaching corporate America by teaching critical thinking through motivational speaking for all the biggest companies, travelling all over the world. His Mental Toughness University is all about critical thinking, not positive thinking or negative thinking or delusional thinking. Facing squarely what "is".

And so you'd expect Siebold's got exactly the same attitude towards COVID-19. He says, we might not like it but realistically we can predict at least two more years of recurring lockdowns. The old normal is never coming back. The old jobs are never coming back. He's taken his own business completely on line. He says 90% of people will do nothing at all about this situation other than sitting back, complaining about it, and politicizing the crisis.

So: what mental toughness alternatives does he recommend?

1. Embracing the change, adapting to the new reality. We might wish it were different but it's not: so how can we make the best of it?

2. Asking ourselves what we can do in this new landscape . . . which for now at least is and will be largely on-line.

3. Devising a plan which takes into consideration what our ideal outcome would be. From a business perspective (his focus), he considers that the "new normal" requires 100% on-line delivery and availability 24/7.

Well, I did not intend yesterday's "Sobering News" blog to focus so much on the "sobering" stuff but rather more on the peace which is still very possible despite the current landscape. Even if that current landscape does continue for two more years. But from the responses, it appears Sparkies are feeling very sobered indeed -- and I see this morning that LA is strongly considering a return to full lockdown given the uptick in cases and deaths. Very much in line with Siebold's predictions.

What's the new reality? Lots of people won't socially distance. They won't mask. They won't accept a vaccination, if and when one is available. They will insist upon their "rights" and their "freedoms" and they will politicize this situation and yearn (fruitlessly) for a return to the old normal -- that old normal which actually did not work all that well for a lot of people. I might wish that were different, but so far the critical thinking evidence indicates: it's not.

How can I make the best of it, from a non-business perspective? I can stay home as much as possible. Sanitize. Mask and social distance when I must go out.

My ideal outcome? It's to sustain my physical and mental health at optimum level during this time, no matter how long it takes. Gentle exercise and good nutrition. Remaining intellectually and emotionally and socially connected in all the new ways. Noticing when I'm agitated with fears from the past or fears for the future and permitting those random thoughts to just flow on past. To focus on the present moment. Where nothing bad is happening. And where many good people are doing their very best to provide essential services and to create new social norms that are more just and more fair and more respectful of difference. To be part of that change when and as I can. Not sobering. Joyous.

The birds are singing, the flowers are blooming. I can trust that the world is still a beautiful place of abundance, contentment and calm. Always just one thought away.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • SPARKLINGME176
    emoticon
    18 days ago
  • TOMATOCAFEGAL
    Wow yes we can.
    19 days ago
  • JUNEPA
    In my small world, everything is fine, arguably better than before Covid restrictions. We are working, all our kids are working. DH decided to put in a garden. We have been doing more home projects. And more home cooking. Healthier living. We, DH, myself, our kids, are thankful to be healthy and all working, either from home (IT workers and farmers) or in essential services (health care). We realize and empathize families who have lost or been separated from loved ones and with businesses that are being forced to close down - restaurants who cannot survive under current restrictions, businesses that rely on tourism (parks, resorts), entertainment (music concerts, professional and recreational sports, film tv or cinema), retail businesses, malls. While in the short term, our family is doing mostly quite well, if the restrictions continue, the crumbling economy will affect us as well.
    21 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/18/2020 10:55:52 AM
  • MARKSMOM3
    emoticon emoticon I am going to check out Steve Siebold. emoticon
    21 days ago
  • CSEGUIN2
    For covid I started thinking his way about a month after we went into lockdown here. It was the only way to reverse the scale. I found a new normal but keep hoping for the best with covid. Have a great Saturday!
    21 days ago
  • JPPERSELL
    I am so impressed with Siebold! It is true that we did gain weight ourselves. We can't blame anyone else other than the person we see looking in the mirror back at us. I agree that the old way of doing things is gone. It is just a super shocker to see this new normal. All I know is that I am missing going out with my husband and going on trips. It stinks to stay home too long. You are right that many people won't have the luxury of working at home online. I only hope that our economy doesn't crash. Praying.
    21 days ago
  • GINA180847
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    21 days ago
  • SUSIEMT
    He sounds like a tough guy this Steve Siebold! Maybe he has something there as far as this Covid-19 goes. I think this is our new normal. I don't want to get used to it but that is something I must work on! (((HUGS)))
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    21 days ago
  • OHMEMEME
    Like your blog and reading comments!
    I’m a Seibold fan! Tell it like it is, listener take it as you’d like. Is he all good or correct...matter of opinion...IMHO, no one is.
    I would like to say surviving Covid out of frustration but truly, thriving. Working on balanced approach of compliance but choosing to continue living my life.
    I’ve heard it asked before, “Were the good old days really that good?!?”
    Learn from the past, cherish the memories, live for today, have hope and prepare for tomorrow. Huh! So which one is it? Lol
    Keep Sparking!
    21 days ago
  • DLMGRAHAM
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    21 days ago
  • no profile photo RACHNACH
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    21 days ago
  • DONNALEE-53
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    21 days ago
  • BONIFIANT
    I think it is good that yours is a featured blog. I hope that many people read it and take it seriously.

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    21 days ago
  • WORKINGSTIFF
    I tweeted yesterday that we need to speak in new terms.

    We don’t need to keep saying, “go BACK to the way things were pre-pandemic.”

    We need to “look and move FORWARD to the future.”

    Things before were definitely NOT all hunky dory for everyone in this country.

    Well written blog! I wholeheartedly agree!
    21 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/17/2020 9:43:44 AM
  • HAYBURNER1969
    Excellent post!
    21 days ago
  • no profile photo SILVERNANCY
    emoticon emoticon
    21 days ago
  • 8HABIT
    Thank you for posting!
    21 days ago
  • SHAKERATTLEROLL
    Sounds like you have a plan and you will be able to stick with them. Be kind to those who choose not to wear a mask for some it truly can be a hard thing to breathe through or other reasons but you can continue to wear one and continue to remind people why.
    21 days ago
  • CHERYLHURT
    Sounds reasonable.
    21 days ago
  • no profile photo GRAMPIAN
    Good attitude. emoticon
    21 days ago
  • UPTOIT59
    I say PREACH - there isn't even a new normal yet- we will get there soon though, I have faith! emoticon
    21 days ago
  • PLCHAPPELL
    thank you - will be checking this site out
    21 days ago
  • KITTYHAWK1949
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    22 days ago
  • SPEDED2
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    22 days ago
  • JHADZHIA
    Quite frankly, its nothing but the same old for me. I am pretty much a homebody. It requires too much efforting to interact with people. I like being at home in my workout wear or jammies or at Mom's lounging in the back yard or going on the trails. Sure I loved taking a bucket list vacation, traveling through the UK and Ireland, fabulous memories. But I don't feel the need to go anywhere. Saskatchewan has lots to offer right here. As I don't drive there isn't a whole lot of places I can go to anyway. I am used to being home. For my relatives and I that is our favorite place to be. I have always been quite happy getting in and out of a store quickly getting what I need only and not shopping around. Cuts down on impulse buying for sure. I enjoyed the peace and quiet of the lockdown while it was on. Now the traffic and sirens are back morning noon and night. Big city life, can see why people escape to the country.
    22 days ago
  • BJAEGER307
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    22 days ago
  • MARTHA324
    The only way I can get through this is to think about what is good and to take care our me and my family (partner and dog). I think you're right that this will be with us for awhile and that is especially true here in the U.S. where we have politicized it and too many refuse to even believe there is such a thing as COVID let alone take precautions

    Luckily here in NY we have a governor who finally stepped up - granted on the late side, but when he did he tackled it with all his energy. Was in NYC yesterday and it was amazing. Everyone wearing a mask or outside had one in hand. Signs all over reminding us to stay 6 ft apart, wear a mask & wash our hands. Stopped at a park before dentist and on the bench by the waterfall there were circles set 6 ft apart. Very relaxing to enjoy the outdoors.

    Here in Westchester we can be outside and our walks around give us physical and psychic energy to keep going.

    Thanks for another thought provoking blog and have a wonderful day!
    22 days ago
  • DESIREE672
    Very soothing blog and probably more relaxing to strap ourselves in for the long haul rather than constantly being shocked that the end of this seems to be always moving out of reach.
    23 days ago
  • _CYNDY55_
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    23 days ago
  • QUARTERMASTER3
    Thought provoking.
    23 days ago
  • NASFKAB
    Excellent post you wrote something very thought provoking.
    23 days ago
  • DOVESEYES
    I look for other people to bless :), I love to go to the shops and say Hi to a stranger or stop and talk to the check out person. He or she has a life too, earning money to look after family, pets, same problems, higher risks in the built up spaces.

    I love nature, especially here in Australia, after being brought up in New Zealand in an area where the grass was always green, the water always flowed, the fires were always in the fire place ... not storming across the land!!

    Rain finally comes, the grey dead ? grass slowly comes to life, peeking up out of the ground ... rain falls ... after a time a visiting person would not believe a month ago it was grey.

    Visitors say " what a beautiful view you have"

    No idea of the strain of buying in water to put in the water tank and being very careful with showers and use of it. Having to fill the cow's bath so she lives .

    Such a blessing to go through these seasons, we are thankful for all around us. Tough times strengthen and 'burn' out the 'weeds' making room for growth :) and enjoyment in each phase.

    Covid is a season and how I react to it will help me 'shine' :)
    23 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/15/2020 9:36:51 PM
  • TERMITEMOM
    I try to live life to the fullest, no matter what. Every day. There is always something to look forward to.
    23 days ago
  • PHOENIX1949
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    23 days ago
  • ALICIA363
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    23 days ago
  • LSANDY7
    If only we could insist that EVERYONE do what needs doing for the safety of ALL! The science deniers and the "Trump is right" no matter what drivel come spewing forth who will NOT mask or distance are putting all chances of controlling this contagion near zero. I guess the mentally tough thing to do is hope natural selection will take care of them.....Stay safe and healthy.......
    23 days ago
  • SPICY23
    emoticon Very Wise. Choose where to put your focus.

    Peace and Care
    23 days ago
  • HOLLYM48
    Great blog. I look at it as the day before me unfolds. If I am work, then the puzzle lies before me as how we will take care of our pts, how will we all stay safe, how can we convey to our pts that they are as safe as we can make them. This is our new normal, we must embrace it and figure out a way through as there isn't an alternative. I just pray that people will consider others when they are out. I wear a mask to protect them, and I just hope they will wear a mask to protect me. If not, then I will stay away from those establishments.
    Be safe!!
    23 days ago
  • NANCY-
    Ah yes things will be different. I cannot fathom why some folks feel the need to politicize the situation. If history repeats itself we should indeed be in for an interesting two years. All I can say is thank heavens for the internet and libraries.
    emoticon
    23 days ago
  • MTN_KITTEN
    I probably would have like Steve Siebold's Mental Toughness. I like "straight" talk.

    Much like losing weight, there things we all should do to to try and minimize this invisible threat.

    Why oh why won't we just do what is needed.
    emoticon
    23 days ago
  • JEANKNEE
    Yes. Two years is what I'm hearing from the sib that works for a U.S. National Lab. This time frame aligns with how the last global pandemic played out as well.

    Sobering and Joyous. Doing my best to embrace the ambiguity of it all.

    We've been enjoying the fledgling activity: red-tailed hawks, American kestrels, American crows, Western scrub jays, house finch, house sparrow, Northern mockingbird. The avian parents have been busy, busy, busy!

    I'm back: Listened to the Siebold video blog. Love it! I'm a tough love and mental toughness kind of gal. I've not been called 'brutally honest' by friends with no good reason. ;-)
    23 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/15/2020 1:31:38 PM
  • PATRICIA-CR
    emoticon emoticon Have a happy Wednesday?
    23 days ago
  • DSHONEYC
    As a fatloser graduate (you in fact turned me on to Siebold and mental toughness) ... it appears getting tough means 'accepting' reality - all of it. The good and the bad ... going for a balance in life and looking for hope in the new-normal. I was under a huge mountain of stress yesterday and was happy to hear hopeful adjustments coming from the Democratic presidential candidate. I believe in better times ahead and will work toward them. When fear strikes good people, it certainly doesn't improve their goodness.

    Sign me,
    ReSISTER aka Do Gooder!

    Be Strong, Be Tough and Be Kind....
    23 days ago
  • NANASUEH
    We will always have selfish people around us, so we have to figure out how to keep ourselves safe in spite of them. It will be interesting to see who's still standing in 2 years.

    emoticon
    23 days ago
  • PENOWOK
    I’m prepped for the long haul, fully expecting a changed world!! We know we won’t be gone for a long time!!
    23 days ago
  • MOLLIEMAC
    I am just coming to the end of Hilary Mantel's impressive novel about the French Revolution, "A Place of Greater Safety"; in reality not a lot has changed since the storming of the Bastille in 1789 and the subsequent years of upheaval. The people wanted change; royalty gone and peaceful rule by the citizens; to achieve that end they went through years of horrendous terror and starvation. It seems to me that COVID is our Bastille, we want it gone but we are at great odds as to how to achieve that. How many are willing to continue a restrictive life for a few months let alone much longer? This is a time of incredible change and upheaval in our society and the vast majority of people are unprepared economically and intellectually to accept that. It will take wise and trusted leadership to avoid inevitable unrest; unfortunately that is MIA.
    23 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/15/2020 12:13:18 PM
  • 36BEATRICE
    Really food for thought!This is going to be the new normal.Time to take stock. For me it is relatively easy, because i am retired , with a roof over my head.But there are so many people who live in uncertain conditions.
    As I have to watch for the virus and live in a certain bubble I remember that we are all connected, for better or for worse.
    I will do my best to not propagate the virus and also, to contribute, in whatever capacity i can, to the wellfare of my society.
    And, as Msmostimproved commented, on your last blog,remember to be kind.
    23 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/15/2020 12:10:01 PM
  • PHEBESS
    On a very personal level, our lives have changed tremendously. We've been travelling for nearly nine years, and now that isn't safe. We're really feeling the effects of our decision to not have a permanent residence. Hotels may be iffy. Any travel may be iffy. Both would likely expose us to virus particles, which we're trying to avoid.

    But yes, I notice the animals, the flowers, the blue blue sky. Yesterday we had a socially-distant visit from our nephew and a grand-nephew (the nephew's nephew). Spent the afternoon enjoying the beach, distant from other beach-goers and distant from each other. No hugs, but a wonderful visit anyway.

    So yes, life is changing. Most of us are modifying our behavior to stay alive and still enjoy things we like to do. It's sobering, but it isn't all-consuming.


    23 days ago
  • GABY1948
    I agree about the "shades" of moods in all this but I have learned a lot (from my hubby) about staying calm in all things and after 26 years he has done a good of making me into him. I am more thankful for that than anything during this whole mess. We can ALL do this! emoticon
    23 days ago
  • THOMS1
    emoticon emoticon
    23 days ago
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