These are scary times and I should know because I’m no stranger to fear. When I was nine years old I watched Earth vs. the Flying Saucers on TV and it flat out scared the living bejibbers out of me.
Most of the movie wasn’t all that bad. I could handle the flying saucers zipping around the sky. I was okay with the battle with the aliens on the military base. But the part that really got me was when the group of earth people entered the saucer. When that glowing, flower-shaped communication device slowly descended from the ceiling and (spoiler alert!) drained the brains of the general and policeman, for some reason that did me in. I was afraid to look around corners for days afterward for fear of aliens jumping out of the shadows and sucking my brains out.
Not that that would have hurt me that much. If my grades back then were any indication, it might have even added a couple points to my IQ.
I had the same experience when I first saw the Wicked Witch of the West’s flying monkeys on The Wizard of Oz. Man-a-livin’, that’s scary cinema. Again, the witch herself wasn’t that bad, but you throw some wings on a few dozen monkeys, and you have yourself a real horror flick.
Fear is a relative concept, though. It depends on the individual and the age in which you live. In World War I it meant bombs, bullets, and sometimes death by mustard gas. Just after WWI, came the Spanish Flu which infected about 500 million people and killed 20 or 30 million people. Then came the Great Depression with a 25% unemployment rate. Then came World War II with more bombs and bullets, and a couple of atomic bombs thrown in to boot.
The fact of life is: scary things come along all the time in history. And relatively speaking, we’re still okay right now for the most part.
Admittedly, life has recently changed for a great number of us and many people are panicking. Grocery stores are being raided for hand sanitizer, water, and toilet paper. I’m not really sure why people are stocking up on TP, though. My guess is they’re building toilet paper fortresses and barricading themselves in.
It’s not my intention to minimize the danger of this current health scare because it’s definitely something we all have to think about. But I have found the best defense against worry and fear is to get a plan, so I suggest the following ideas to help you in both your business and personal lives.
Don’t focus on:
- Things you can’t control. You’ll drive yourself nuts trying to control a crazy world. It’s far better to think about what you can do rather than what you can’t.
- Sensationalist news reports. Yes, we all need to be in the know. But staying glued to your computer or television is not healthy, mentally or physically.
Instead, focus on:
- Improving your office systems. Now is a great time to get rid of activities, equipment, and behaviors that waste your time and money.
- Improving your customer service. Why not take advantage of this moment and use it to add value to your business? I have several YouTube videos that you can use to achieve this goal with your staff.
- Your health. Yes, of course, you should wash your hands and use hand sanitizer. But now is a great time to start eating right and exercising. When so much is out of control in your life, you’ll feel a lot better if you can point to at least one area that has improved.
- Your vision. It’s a great time to think about where your want to go and how you want to spend your days on earth.
Your goal during this time is to come out stronger than when you began. I know it doesn’t look like it, but we all have been given a gift. We have a pause in our society right now that will allow us a moment to re-set, re-focus, and re-prioritize.
So turn off your TV and come on out of that toilet paper fortress. The world is still a pretty great place and you need to be part of it.
© 2020 Charles Marshall. Charles Marshall is a nationally known humorous motivational speaker and author. Visit his Web site www.CharlesMarshallSpeaker.com or contact him via e-mail at Charles@CharlesMarshallSpeaker.com