I post photos of nature that I feel are a roadmap to a beautiful world. Most people who see this are appreciative! Whatever your strength is, cooking, writing, dancing, smiling or laughing — — do that and share it with others in a positive way. Be there for those who are suffering, by sharing your gifts.
As a part of my series about the things we can do to remain hopeful and support each other during anxious times, I had the pleasure of interviewing Susan Nefzger.
Susan Nefzger is a veteran PR professional with a highly substantive 30 year career prior to attending a writing retreat in Glastonbury, England in 2015. There, her life was literally transformed as she aligned with destiny to write “A Practical Guide to Awareness”. It is relevant in today’s coronovirus pandemic as it points to self reliance, as the emerging key to a different lifestyle for all of us
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory about what brought you to your specific career path?
Yes! In many ways I have been preparing for this moment in time, since I published my first book in 2018. I have been spent many hours writing, spending time alone at home, in order to hone my craft and message of self awareness mastery. The inspiration which allowed me to write the book is what has motivated me to help others become self aware in order to find fulfillment. One way I do this is through sharing articles, podcasts, and blogs on the “5 Steps to Self-Awareness Mastery.” I have also been speaking on the topic, as it is relevant to many audiences whether business or personal. The reason this framework is so important right now is because we must go within to know who we are. To understand yourself at the deepest levels, alleviates fear. Why is that? Because when you know yourself, it creates resilience. It creates the resilience of knowing you can depend on yourself, regardless of what is happening in the outer world.
Ok, thank you for all that. Now let’s move to the main focus of our interview. Many people have become anxious from the dramatic jolts of the news cycle. The fears related to the coronavirus pandemic have heightened a sense of uncertainty, fear, and loneliness. From your perspective can you help our readers to see the “Light at the End of the Tunnel”? Can you share your “5 Reasons To Be Hopeful During this Corona Crisis”? If you can, please share a story or example for each.
I’d be happy to help people understand that the reality as presented by the news media is not our reality unless we accept it as such. We must visualize our perfect world and keep seeing it as our reality in order to create it. Look beyond the present situation to see a better day, then through our thoughts we create it. One tip is to try not to get ahead of yourself by wondering how everything will work out. Having been in the seeking mode for 30 years on the journey of spirituality and self awareness, it became crystal clear to me. It really is all about being present in each moment. This approach allows us to understand that yes, it is about the journey, not the destination. So much can change in a moment. Every day we get a chance to start over. We are in charge of how we respond to the world. Not the other way around. It has been said that “Hope is the elixir of the divine.” The reasons to be hopeful now are, we get to spend the time at home now in a schedule we create. (I understand people are working from home, but you still create how you will manage that instead of taking the train to work in the city or driving your car.) I’ll bet that everyone is learning a new skill or hobby. We are spending more time in nature, with our families and in true communication with our all of our loved ones and friends. Our world has shifted back to the emphasis on what is meaningful in our daily lives. That promotes happiness and happiness equals hope!
From your experience or research what are five steps that each of us can take to effectively offer support to those around us who are feeling anxious? Can you explain?
I’d be happy to explain the five steps we can take to support others during this time. First, begin your day in quiet time even if it is just a few minutes. Give thanks for the benefits, blessings and all the things we are grateful to have right now. This sets the tone for your day as one of gratitude and positivity. Try meditating, doing breathwork, yoga and stretching and exercise, sitting outside in nature’s stillness if possible. These aspects of self-care help us connect within to be in the best possible space for us. Then, we can be readily available for others. Reach out to your family and friends to see how they are and let them know you care. In so doing, be objective and listen without judgement. It is difficult to do this, I understand. This also promotes kindness and a feeling of empathy.
Listen and offer a positive aspect of conversation or thought to the person. I always try to focus on the positive, it helps to flip the switch on negativity. Offer others a way to see the positive, through words, pictures, and communication. For instance, on social media or email try to send out really positive sources instead of the negative points of reference related to our current health crisis. I post photos of nature that I feel are a roadmap to a beautiful world. Most people who see this are appreciative! Whatever your strength is, cooking, writing, dancing, smiling or laughing — — do that and share it with others in a positive way. Be there for those who are suffering, by sharing your gifts. Make a list of 2–3 small goals to accomplish each day and when you complete them congratulate yourself. Offer that tip to others as well, to look at what they have accomplished instead of worrying. If we can be flexible now and create new ways of daily life, we will be better off than waiting to get back to “normal.”
What are the best resources you would suggest to a person who is feeling anxious?
My favorite is breathwork. There are many resources for breathwork, and they all work. It lowers the fight or flight response in the body, which is highly effective for anxiety reduction. Find a source or method that works for you and do it several times a day if you are feeling anxious. The alternate nostril breathing technique is easy, quick and effective. Breathe in through one side of your nose while holding the other. Breathe out through the alternate side. Do this 4–5 times from each nostril.
Focus on the simple things you can control, like writing a letter to a friend or family member. Try cooking a meal, if you feel you are not a good cook, find a source online or on TV to watch, and follow. Same with dancing, its simple, turn on the radio, and have fun with it. Watch an old TV show like Andy Griffith that harks back to the simpler times. If you have pets, pet them or brush them slowly. It is a proven stress management method. Go outside in your yard, on your patio or on your balcony, look up at the sky, especially at night! Breathe deeply and release. Realize we are just a speck on the planet. Looking back at the historical events that have changed the course of our lives and those of our ancestors, we see that everything changes and nothing stays the same. This episode in time as dark as it seems, will not last forever.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Do you have a story about how that was relevant in your life?
Seeing beyond the ordinary is a timeless saying as old as the Bible. It is the title of my website as it speaks to an unending curiosity, and willingness to see beauty in each day and look beyond what may seem ordinary to find the extraordinary. It is my mantra, and I share beauty for the purpose of allowing others to see it and find inspiration through it.
You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
I am creating a self awareness movement now. I feel that the more we understand who we are as a person, what makes is passionate, what makes us happy is the key to our true purpose. Then we discover our gifts that if shared with the world, will inevitably lift up the entire planet. If we all strive to share our gifts, we will succeed in changing the current paradigm.
What is the best way our readers can follow you online?
My website is https://seeingbeyondtheordinary.com where you will find my books, poetry,and blogs. I offer an online course now for managing your fear, and a retreat for Self Awareness Mastery. My Instagram is a_practical_guide_to_awareness, and Facebook, where I share daily inspiration, images and quotes. I also share my nature photos on @snefzgerpr.
Thank you for these fantastic insights. We wish you only continued success in your great work!