Fear is a signal - it is your body and brain indicating that something is not right to protect you and keep you safe. The mind responds with “fear thoughts” and the body reacts with stress hormones, providing the chemical reactions of “fight or flight”. The immediate desire is safety and security.
FEAR = False Evidence Appearing Real
And this inhibits our ability to problem solve, be creative and intuitive.
Dealing with your fear
Currently, there is an abundance of fear in our world which can overwhelm us during this Covid pandemic. Decisions about whether kids should be going back to school or not are creating uncertainty and paralysis, hindering our ability to make decisions OR creating extreme fear about safety.
”Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.” – Marie Curie
I have spoken to a variety of people to find out their point of view about whether or not to go back to school. I am very surprised at the very different points of view and the variety of information they are basing their decisions upon.
To overcome fear we need good information about risks vs rewards; coherent and applicable plans for each school, taking into consideration the diversity of the school (teachers,staff AND children); proper support for parents of children with special needs; technological training for all that need it and time to “get up to speed”; flexibility for parents, teachers and staff to make comfortable choices for there families; and lastly, compassion and understanding for people to make decisions that work for themselves and their families.
Turning this fear into something of an opportunity
I truly believe that instead of leading with fear we can turn this fear into an opportunity. There are some parents who have shared that this online learning has worked for their anxious child and/or those challenged by attention problems. The child who was made to sit in a chair all day without much movement, now can take breaks when needed and, therefore be more focused. The anxious child and highly sensitive child can manage the quieter environment at home and the physical issues related to anxiety have decreased. Some families have mentioned that they have more quality time with their kids because there is less rushing around. So the opportunity is that we can learn by looking at what HAS worked for kids rather than focus only about what has not.
What if we could “do school” differently. Maybe the opportunity to change the old structure and create mini academies that include art/science/technology/sport/music etc… And rotate children around so that there are more diverse opportunities to learn. We could even engage local businesses to develop this into a more robust community program.
In our Wednesday training in the Joyful Parent Facebook Group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/thejoyfulparent/) we are looking at how we can shift from fear and feeling overwhelmed to trust, and ultimately peace. Please join me or listen to the recording!
“I'm a San Francisco-based parent coach helping families, couples, and single parents to embrace life as it comes, find stability even in times of chaos, and dramatically improve their lives.”
Carol Passmore email@example.com