The best possible things we can do to survive the current Covid-19 Corona virus pandemic, and every other tough time we'll ever go through, may not be what you think they are.
The best way to not only survive, but to emerge successfully from hard times, is to be your best self. How? By putting your love into action.
Love isn’t just a feeling. Feelings come and go, but the love within each of us that makes us our best selves is measured by the way we treat others. It's the actions you do for one another in your everyday life. Here's what it means to put your love into action:
GIVE THE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT and BE QUICK TO FORGIVE—Forgiveness by definition is giving mercy to someone who doesn’t deserve it. Forgive even when you think you’re right because this demonstrates in a meaningful way that you value the other person more than you value being right.
EXERCISE SELF-CONTROL—This means not doing what your impulses would lead you to do in the heat of the moment. It means not raising your voice or getting physical when the behavior of others is intolerable. Take a walk, find a quiet place, take a bath, breathe, or whatever you have to do to control yourself from saying or doing something that isn't reflective of the best you.
DON’T BE DIFFICULT TO LIVE WITH—Be understanding, calm, and concerned, keeping your own negative emotions and reactions in check. Be flexible. Be willing to let others watch what they want on TV, to borrow your things, or to do whatever within reason keeps peace. Loosening your grip on the way you think things should be is worth the peace you'll maintain.
DON’T BE RUDE—Be kind, polite, and respectful to everyone within your influence. All words and behaviors, facial expressions, and body language are communication. Your communication sets the tone in your life. It is a model for others to follow.
IGNORE INSULTS—Assume that the other person didn’t intend to harm you. Look beyond what is said or done to what's going on inside the other person. Bad behavior or unacceptable words are often indicative of some underlying fear or hurt. The underlying meaning is often “Do you love me?” or an emphatic “You don’t love me!” People are far more likely to take correction and advice from people whom they believe love them. If you can love someone despite the behavior, you will be more likely to each them. Be selectively deaf!
BE PATIENT—Decide now to be patient with others, especially when the other person is acting like a knucklehead—because we all have our moments. This is easy to do when times are good, but when times are difficult, patience becomes a choice. Breathe, leave the room if you have to, change the subject, agree to disagree, and learn to say things like, "I hear you," and "you may be right."
BE KIND—Think of how kind you are to someone for whom you feel sympathy or to someone you don't know well who is kind to you. Be even kinder than that to those who are closest to you. It's easy to be kind to people who we aren't close to--people who aren't close enough to dance on our last nerve. Decide to be kinder to your loved ones than you are to anyone else.
Putting your love into action models loving behavior for others. When people feel loved, they are more likely to act better and make better choices, and become the people they were created to be.
Rhonda Sciortino, author of Love Is Action--how to change the world with love, was abandoned at the age of 6 months, raised by a mentally ill man and an alcoholic woman in a bizarre, emotional roller coaster of a childhood. Rhonda Sciortino used the coping skills from her childhood survival to start her own business and develop it, along with her other investments, into a multi-million dollar balance sheet. She credits a brief stay with a wonderful foster family for teaching her that there was a better way to live. Through her speaking, writing, podcast, and videos she shares how others can use the obstacles in their lives as stepping stones to a great future. Join her weekdays at 8:30 a.m. pacific time for her FaceBook Live events, LIVE LOVE SURVIVE THRIVE.