Aplin Group Blog

It is safe to say that for most of us (if not all), 2020 is not going as planned. Lost jobs, salary cuts, kids out of school, delayed weddings, cancelled travel plans, and uncertainty over what life will look like tomorrow inevitably create anxiety.

It’s normal and understandable not to feel okay. But it is possible to be steady on our path even when the way is uncertain. Here are three steps to help you remain sane, productive, and motivated, even during the unprecedented times we’re living through:
Take care of yourself first
Self-care is such a simple concept that most of us tend to forget. On an airplane during an emergency, you put an oxygen mask on yourself before helping others. Similarly, in your everyday life, you have to take care of yourself before you can improve your kids with homework, invest in your relationships, or be productive.

But what is taking care of yourself? You’ve heard it many times. Get enough sleep, work out, eat nutritious meals, etc. And we all have excuses over why we don’t follow these health guidelines. As a personal trainer, I’ve heard it all – there is no gym near me; I work late; I am busy with kids. Taking good care of yourself is the only way to do well in all aspects of your life.

Remember the movie Sparta and the insane training regimen that ancient Spartans had? They trained hard because they knew that they had to be fit, strong, and healthy to defend themselves against their neighbours and disease to survive; this still rings true today.
Have a purpose
Having a purpose will guide you through difficult times. Your goal should be something bigger, something you can look up to when you feel lost or defeated. It must be a vision compelling enough that it will get you out of bed even when everything else falls apart. For some, it can be money, kids, or creating a difference in someone’s life. It can be anything if it helps you hold yourself accountable.
Commit to something and set a deadline
Now that you’re fit (or maybe you’re in the process of getting fit) and have your purpose posted on your wall, how do you get going? The answer is simple – commit to something (anything!) and mark it in your calendar.

Among all the personal training clients I’ve worked with, the most motivated by far have been brides that have a wedding day on the calendar. Something changes when you register for a marathon when you train to look your best for a wedding or announce to your family that you’re launching your own company on a particular date. Suddenly, your back is against the wall, something is holding you accountable, and you must make it happen. After all, you just let people know you have a goal and a deadline.

Find a goal that will excite you. It should be hard enough so that you feel challenged but not entirely unrealistic so that it only brings anxiety, and you don’t even know how to tackle it. It can be an aggressive sales goal at work, a Tough Mudder race, or kitchen renovations. Commit to it, pick a date, let others know about it, and get after it!


David Aplin Group is a private family and employee-owned Canadian staffing agency founded in Alberta in 1975, recognized as one of Canada's most accomplished recruiting firms. Our mission is to positively impact lives.  

Photo by Wesley Eland on Unsplash