It’s been almost three years and we are still coping with Covid and it looks like we’ll be doing that for some time to come.

With fall and eventually winter around the corner, and flu and Covid causing more problems, how shall we prepare ourselves for the colder months to come?

Carol Dweck, a psychologist at Stanford University has written extensively on people’s  mindsets and how they affect resilience and our  ability to move forward.

In her findings, she identifies people as having either  fixed mindsets or a growth mindsets.  If you have a fixed mindset you might believe you can’t change or evolve and that you have always been and  will always be the same person you are now.  If you have a growth mindset you may believe that your personality and capabilities are changeable and that you  evolve and change over time with circumstances.

We are all probably a mixture of both types of thinking at different times in our lives, but, if you  believe that you will always be the same person you are now, probably you are a fixed mindset person. If you believe you are constantly changing than you are probably more of a growth mindset individual.

Dweck applies her findings to education, primarily, encouraging parents and teachers to help kids foster a growth mindset so they are open to change and are more resilient when things don’t go their way.  Although her main focus is education, perhaps some of her theories might help us reset our minds to be more resilient and open to changing circumstances.  Here are some suggestions to help us adopt a growth mindset:

  • What new or different things can you add to your life now?  This is a great time to take an online course – there are lots of options on the internet from crafts to academics to cooking to exercise or even meditation.  Is there something you’ve always wanted to try out or learn?  Why not sign up for something this fall to expand your mind and your experiences?
  • Keep in touch.  It is so important to retain your connections both as a widow/widower and as we all work our way through Covid.  If you’ve been putting off calling that long lost relative or friend, why not do it now?  It  may lead to a renewed friendship or resolution to a long ago situation.   Join us on Zoom for opportunities to meet others and share conversations and maybe even a few laughs.  Keeping in touch with our community, sharing experiences and hearing about other’s journeys is uplifting and sure to help boost your mood.  If you are a member and haven’t been receiving our newsletter, let us know.  Keeping in contact helps all of us feel part of our Widowed Friends family.
  • Stay in the present.  If we focus on the here and now and accept the things we can’t change, it’s easier to focus on what we can change without worrying about the past or the future.

It’s not easy to stay positive, it takes a bit of work and effort to change our mindsets, but in the long run, if we focus on growth we will feel more positive and productive and manage the coming winter months in a more positive frame of mind.