Corona-apocalypse and fear countermeasures

Comfort zone to Superzone infographic
Posted on: Thursday 02, April 2020
Category: Thought Leadership

This pandemic crisis 😷has (will) hit us all hard. Crisis creates uncertainty for everyone. So, hands up who hasn’t felt a teeny bit of negativity, fear or anxiousness 😬 over the last week? Fear is a fully functioning default part of our humanity, where the downstairs (chimp) part of our brain 🧠 engages in a flight-fight-freeze response. This is the Fear Zone. And our default response is often to retreat into our Comfort Zone (see graphic).

A common question asked is: "What we can do as leaders to combat the fear that comes with uncertainty?" Well, the antidote is to firstly accept these feelings - It's okay NOT to be okay, and that's okay! Secondly, we must pipe down our chimp - negative inner talk. At the same time, stretch into our Learning Zone where we can develop the bandwidth, resilience and capacity to reach for our higher-selves (in the Superpower Zone). 

But, for many people this is so challenging because the natural reactions will be:

“Yes, but how do I do that?

Will it really make a difference?

What does that shift look like?

What are the steps? Will they work for me?"

This is our ego-self yakking on and on because it doesn’t like change or uncertainty that comes from crisis.

Our ego's always respond with fear and has a habit of rationalising us into more of the same. But, reflecting further on this, to move beyond the ego construct starts with an intention to change the status quo. The process going on then is moving from the default downstairs brain and instead activating our upstaris part of our brainis. That activity enables us to use our resourcefullness to imagine a more compelling vision of what’s possible.

In so doing we learn to figure out how to bounce back. In these troubled times, it is crucial as leaders how we show up for ourselves and for others.

We can all reach our Superpower Zone folks. But it is not about finding simple answers to a complex question. Instead it is one of intention and reflection to be the best version we can be and make the most of every situation we find ourselves in and asking 'what opportunities can come out of this crisis for me.'

Being supported by a coach, or a great group of leaders can help you with your thinking to move beyond the Fear and Comfort Zones and lean in toward learning to find the potential emerging solutions.

 Stay safe, be kind, keep well.


[500 words]

While you're here:

Invitation to a Peer Group Problem Solving Virtual Round table

As a leader of a business during this complex time, there are urgent decisions to make, and it can be lonely at the top.

I would like to invite you to join our per group peer problem solving round tables FREE OF CHARGE. We just know how tricky it can be to make sense of all the challenges on your plate right now and we believe our Rapid Response Team can help you. 

We will be there for you:

8 o’clock Zoom Room

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Join us for one session or several a week and bring whatever business challenges you are facing, and the group will explore options and ideas.

We are also putting together a roster of guest contributors with specialist insights  including the psychology of leading in a crisis, marketing, strategy, product, networking and more.

To get joining instructions just reply to this e-mail and I will forward on the calendar invites, or sign up here.

Looking forward to seeing you in the Zoom Room

Until then, take care,

Andrew, Charles, Chris and Pete

CEO Growth Academy Rapid Response Team

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Note on Graphics:

My graphic - inspired and adapted from @thewealthhike


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