Getting Better at Getting Better

Finding your way when the way isn't clear.

Victor Saad

Founder

Hey, I’d like to invite you to something next week, but first, an honest moment…

This took me by surprise. I wish I could tell you that I saw it coming. I have access to the news and I was watching things unfold overseas. But like most of the country, I didn’t take it seriously enough.

By mid-March, Coronovirus had become COVID-19 and people were talking about things that only seemed to happen in the movies. Shelter in place? Quarantine? Global shut-down??

No way.

The implications of those things on me, my friends, and my projects have been stunning. It’s like double-engine-failure in the middle of a flight.

In response, our incredible team has been resurfacing our research on how to help individuals, managers, and organizations (and ourselves) push through adversity. It’s been a sort of therapeutic practice to pull myself out of being the one facing the crisis and think about how to teach someone else to face these days with grit and clarity.

There’s no shortage of tips and tricks online for remaining resilient during this time.

But if you’re like me, it’s hard to sift through the content — especially when fatigue and fear are present. So here’s a glimpse into three things we’ve been geeking out on as we steel ourselves against adversity.

Accept Yourself


This first part often gets overlooked. No matter how you’re showing up today, that’s who you are. And that’s ok.

Instead of pushing yourself to work harder or distracting yourself with food, news, humor, etc — pause. Take a deep breath. Realize that you are human and there is a situation (or multiple situations) that are causing stress or fear.

This might look like taking a few deep breaths, writing in a journal, or having a conversation with a close friend, family member, or colleague. Give yourself space to do whatever it takes to get to a feeling of “This is hard, but it’s going to be ok. I’m going to be ok.”

Diagnose Pressure & Fuel Points

Once you’re there, then it’s time to take inventory. Here are a few questions to help:

What specifically is causing the tension?
What things are you procrastinating?
What are you worrying about?

These are your pressure points.

But don’t stop there. Take inventory of the good things in your world.

What is bringing you joy?
What are you leaning into?

These are your fuel points. You’ll need a lot of these to make it through this time.

Know (or find) Your Purpose

People who find their way through hard times have the ability to see the light at the end of the tunnel. They can picture the reward, the outcome, the goal. For some of us, it’s usually a combination of a more transcendent purpose (ie: family, connection, meaning, impact) with something more concrete (providing for my family, being my own boss, creating something with people I admire, etc).

Personally, building an organization that equips people to transform our world for the better has always been my goal. And now doing it with the friends who’ve come around Ei is a dream. So for me, I have this vivid picture of students graduating from our programs more confident, and professionals leaving our workshops more prepared — all with our team as the engine. That’s worth fighting for.

Finding that purpose may take time. That’s ok. Take all the time you need.

An Invitation…

If you’d like to dive in with us and learn how to thrive in times of adversity, we’re offering our first-ever open workshop to our community. In this live remote workshop, we will share exercises for diagnosing your own pressure points, setting and committing to a bigger purpose for your team, and understanding your smoothest possible “recovery path” from setbacks. This won’t be a webinar that you simply watch — you’ll connect live with other amazing people in our community and with our instructors.

All of this will take place on April 15th from 10am-11am CST. Click here to register.

Free or Pay What You Wish

We understand that many of our friends are experiencing economic uncertainty during this time, so we’ve opened free or “pay what you wish” options for this specific workshop. If you can pay, great. If not, please join us. We’re in this together.

All of this is part of a suite of programs we’re teaching to help individuals, teams, managers, and educators lead with strength and confidence from wherever you are in the world. Designing and leading it with the Ei team has been one of the most meaningful things I’ve done in the past month. And I’d love to share it with you.

Hope to see you there.

 

Credits: Illustrations by Timo Kuilder

posted by

Victor Saad

Founder

I’m an author, educator, and community builder living in Chicago. I started Experience Institute, an organization helping college students and career professionals learn and grow through short-term, real-world experiences.

The spark you’ve been looking for.

Visit our store to find award-winning education tools used by individuals and teams around the world.