No one has to tell you that these are difficult and trying times. Everyone has been affected by the coronavirus pandemic in some way or another. And as cases continue to pile up across America, unemployment continues to rise, and businesses continue to go bankrupt seven months into the pandemic, we’re faced with what seems like unending uncertainty.
“Uncertainty is a dangerous state of being for businesses,” says Scott O Hirsch CEO and founder of Media Direct. “It can keep you from hiring new talent, stagnate creativity and innovation while you watch the market, and keep you from making investments.” But how can you fight uncertainty during a time of unprecedented crisis?
“Positive thinking,” says Hirsch, a well known digital marketing guru. “It sounds like a placebo, something you tell people when you don’t know what else to say – but positive thinking is a powerful tool. I’m not saying we should ignore what’s going on around us or be blindly optimistic. Positive thinking is about accepting reality and then making the best of it.”
But frankly, we’re all a little tired of pandemic positivity. It can be exhausting to hunt for that thin silver lining while your world is on fire. So how can we fight the pull of negativity and encourage ourselves to think positively? Scott O Hirsch has some suggestions.
1. Set Achievable Goals and to Kick-Start Motivation Says Scott Hirsch
“When you’re trying to hold everything together and barely making it, it’s hard to stay motivated,” says Scott O Hirsch and communications expert. “Now is not the time to set newer and bigger goals. Now is the time to look at your 2020 goals from the first quarter, revise them to make them more reasonable, and adjust expectations.”
Striving for unachievable goals, or goals that no longer make sense in a post-pandemic world is energy-sapping and demotivating – for you and your team. People held to unachievable standards are bound to burn out and become less productive. Instead, Hirsch suggests that you take your revised goals, present them to your team, and set up milestones at smaller intervals to check in and celebrate success.
“Sometimes, all we need to be motivated and think more positively is a win, no matter how small,” says Scott O Hirsch. “Setting goals and milestones that you know are achievable and then celebrating your employees for hitting those goals is a way to say ‘thank you for showing up.’ And it builds confidence in a snowball effect. In a few months, you may end up closer to your original goals than you expected.”
Not sure where to start? Scott suggests focusing on tightening and improving your internal processes and strategies. Double your database, freshen up your marketing creative and website, implement some efficiencies you’ve been holding off on, or try that new software you didn’t have the time to test out before. “It’s about focusing on what you can control,” says Scott Hirsch CEO and strategist. “This way, you’ll be up and running even better than before when the storm finally passes.”
2. Self Care is Vital Says Scott Hirsch
“As a marketing professional, I love a good commercial, tagline, or ad. And one of my favorites that I still think about all the time is an 80s Nike advertisement that says ‘Eat right. Get lots of sleep. Go like hell’,” says Scott Hirsch CEO of Media Direct. “It’s difficult to stay positive when you don’t feel well. Fitness and nutrition are crucial components of staying positive no matter the circumstances.”
Regular exercise has been proven to improve mental health by releasing feel-good endorphins and chemicals that fight the symptoms of depression and anxiety. And eating an unhealthy diet – specifically ones high in fat and sugar – has been proven to shrink the pleasure receptors in your brain and cause cravings that hijack your body and your emotions.
When you feel good, it’s easier to keep a clear mind because you’re not being distracted by aches and pains and exhaustion. Staying healthy shouldn’t be a luxury. It should be a way to invest in yourself. You’ll end up happier, more positive, and more centered.
“It’s also a great way to motivate yourself, because this is something you have control over,” says Scott O Hirsch. “This is another chance to set achievable goals, watch your progress, and celebrate the small victories. Losing another inch, being able to lift ten more pounds, running an extra mile… It will boost your confidence in every other area of your life.”
“Positivity is a mindset,” says Hirsch. “It doesn’t just happen. You have to cultivate it and practice it. But once you do, you’ll start reaping the rewards immediately.”
Scott Hirsch CEO and founder of Media Direct is a well-known innovator and creator in the field of digital marketing. His pioneering work in e-commerce and direct marketing still impacts the field today.