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For many people, lockdown has provided a time for personal development. You may have discovered and worked on new qualities or skills. But I’m very aware that just as many people have found it a really stressful and incredibly busy time. Perhaps you’re a key worker, or a working parent juggling schooling and office hours. Maybe you’re out of work, have lost loved ones, or are in any way struggling to cope.
This week’s podcast has a really important message for everyone: be kind to yourself. It’s OK not to have acquired new skills or found enlightenment.
I’m delighted to welcome back Dr Tara Swart, a previous guest, whose message I think is more important now than ever. Tara’s impressive list of credentials includes medical doctor, neuroscientist, psychiatrist, lecturer at MIT, business coach and author. Her passion is teaching people how to apply lessons from neuroscience and behavioural psychology – in easy, achievable ways – to enhance their everyday lives and better cope with stress and change.
We discuss some really practical, empowering acts of self-care you can easily build into your day – micro habits that can build your resilience to stress. Not all of us have time for 90 minutes of yoga every evening. But Tara explains there is no need to worry – simply lying on your yoga mat for five minutes sends the signal to your brain that you matter and that you are worth looking after.
We chat about the value of journaling during the pandemic; how it develops self-awareness and can help our relationships. We also talk about spirituality, vivid dreaming, and how to cope if you’re feeling anxious about the easing of lockdown or uncertain about the future.
Finally, Tara talks us through how to create a ‘vision board’ for how we want life to be different after lockdown. Mine is going to include less time travelling, more with my family, whom I’ve come to cherish more than ever during these past months. What would be on your action board? What have you learned about yourself during lockdown – and how do you want that to inform the life you lead going forward? I really hope this conversation helps you to consider that.
Disclaimer: The content in the podcast and on this webpage is not intended to constitute or be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.*
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Watch the video version of this interview in full below.
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