COVID-19: It has come, it will pass

A scientist who worked late in the laboratory went into a walk-in freezer to get some stuff and, unintentionally, closed the door behind him. The moment he shut the door, he realised his mistake; he would not be able to open the door from the inside. It also meant that he would stay inside the freezer till the morning when the door would be opened. This realisation sent shivers down his spine. He was arrested by fear. He did not see himself surviving the all night cold temperature. He cursed himself for going into the freezer. He blamed himself for shutting the door absentmindedly. He blamed his superior who gave him the task that kept him so late in the laboratory. After he was done blaming everyone, he readied himself to die. But being a scientist, he thought that the process of his death should add to the existing body of knowledge. So, he decided to record in his notebook the symptoms of a man who was freezing to death.

As he waited for his slow death, he began to journal the process. He wrote down times and the physical sensations he was experiencing. As he began to lose consciousness, he recorded his feelings and eventually surrendered to the cold hands of death.

When his colleagues got to the freezer in the morning, they found him dead with his notebook beside him. But to their utter surprise, his colleagues discovered that the freezer temperature was far below freezing level. The freezer was not cold enough to kill anyone. The colleagues found out that the freezer had enough oxygen to see the scientist trough the night. So, it was not the cold temperature of the freezer that killed him. He was killed by the fear in his heart and what he allowed in his mind.

The world is in the grips of fear instigated by the ravaging coronavirus disease. With over a million people in over 204 countries and territories infected and more than 53,000 fatalities, being afraid of the virus is normal. But a time of crisis is anything but normal. Therefore, submitting to fear is counterproductive. Fear paralyses the brain and makes thinking right herculean. Fear breeds irrationality and irrationality gives rise to either surrendering to the situation or seeking quick fixes, neither of which really solves the problem. Instead of sinking into fear, get all the correct information you can about COVID-19 so that you can take informed decision.

In this season, we have to be careful about the thought we allow in our mind. The only thing that comes to some people’s mind when they remember COVID-19 is death. Some other people only think of the financial losses the pandemic has brought to them. While these are realities of the times, worrying about the losses and the pains will not change the situation. If anything, it will worsen it. So, instead of wasting precious time worrying about what you have little or no control over, engage your mind with positive things. Now that you have all the time in the world to plan your business and your life, think about what you can do differently to improve your lot. According to Albert Einstein, a problem cannot be solved at the same level of thinking (or consciousness) we were when it happened. The import of this is that to solve a problem, we have to change how we think about it. So, instead of seeing the current situation as a dead end, see it as an opportunity to begin again in a better and more informed way.

Jack Canfield, author and personal development coach, gave the world a formula that has helped many people. He writes in one of his books, The Success Principle that E+R=O, where E is Event, R is Response and O is Outcome. According to the celebrated author, E is constant but R is the main determinant of the outcome. This is why two people with a similar challenge record different results. It is the response to the event that determines an outcome, not the event itself.

So, you have to be deliberate in the way you respond to the coronavirus scourge. Don’t let it weigh you down. Don’t get despondent. Don’t lose hope. Don’t get fretful. Look beyond the scourge to the promising life ahead.

Some people are going to die as a result of the rampaging pandemic, resolve that you will not be numbered among the dead. Some people are going to be financially ruined by the disease, make up your mind that your experience will be different. Some people’s lives will be thwarted by coronavirus, determine that your own life would be preserved. Bear in mind the immortal words of Walter D. Wintle, who said, “If you think you are beaten, you are; If you think you dare not, you don’t; If you’d like to win, but think you can’t, It’s almost a “cinch” you won’t. If you think you’ll lose, you’ve lost; For out in the world you find success begins with a fellow’s will;

It’s all in the state of mind.”

Don’t get careless or reckless, but do not succumb to fear. Whenever you are tempted to surrender to fear, remember it was not the coldness of the freezer that killed the scientist. It was his fear. Don’t be a casualty of your fear.

Our rendezvous will transcend this season. Let’s keep hope alive!


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