As Tasmania’s response to the Coronavirus continues, many organisations are continuing to cancel events, restricting face to face meetings and the borders are largely closed. Similarly, individuals remain affected with many having travel plans cancelled, being unable to attend interstate family events or even be with an ill loved one.

The outbreak has clearly disrupted our personal and professional routines, adding a new level of constraints to our daily lives.

But operating with constraints isn’t always bad, particularly here in Tasmania where we are so fortunate to be Coronavirus free. Often, constraints can lead us toward different ways of thinking and doing that can drive change and provide new directions not considered before. When we don’t have any restrictions on us, we, as creatures of habit tend to generally do what we have always done and don’t consider possible changes or improvements.

There is a fair amount of evidence to suggest that constraints can make us be more creative. Instead of focusing on the disruptions to our lives, we might reflect on some of our assumptions.

  • Maybe we can do this online?
  • Maybe just because we always have done this doesn’t mean we have to continue…
  • Maybe we need less than we think to make us happy?
  • Maybe what we thought was making us happy is actually not!

In life, we don’t always control what happens to us, but we can always control our reactions.  Even in difficult times we can push aside our desires and frustration and find a way to be grateful for what we DO have and help those who need us.

This is especially important to remember for those whose lives have been merely disrupted by the Coronavirus, rather than directly and significantly impacted.

For example, our Year 12 students would have had plans for their final year of school. Some may have considered performing in the school play, being part of a choir, dancing at the College ball, attending Schoolies interstate or even an oversees GAP year.

In situations like this, perspective is crucial. The Coronavirus is dangerous and life-threatening for some, but for many others, it has offered the opportunity to challenge assumptions about what we really value in life.  People who excel in times of crisis are often the ones who keep perspective and find fulfillment in helping those who have a greater need than their own.

“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.” -Alexander Graham Bell

This week we were contacted by Paul Dillon, a regular and very popular speaker at our College. He asked if our students might be interested in sending a supportive message to our Victorian peers who are facing huge challenges with their learning (and wellbeing)  given the restrictions now in place in Melbourne. Our WAVE Ambassadors were only too keen to have a go!

Kylie Wolstencroft
Wellbeing Coordinator / Registered Psychologist