Is Self-Fulfilment Still Possible During A Pandemic?

Reflections On Self-Fulfilment In A Pandemic

Is self-fulfilment in a pandemic even possible? 

In a developing country where, generally, our basic needs are met, many people seek fulfilment by pursuing a sense of purpose. It tend to be about making a change, or being driven by a passion. 

It has been an interesting time, and many of us have been triggered in to ‘survival’ mode. So can we still focus on a sense of purpose, or consider self-fulfilment during a pandemic at all?

If we look at Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (below) we can imagine that the outbreak of Covid 19 just knocked the top off our personal pyramids. In our society many of us have been striving for self-fulfilment, but suddenly, we were in a position where our basic needs became the number one priority. Hence the fights over toilet roll and the stockpiling of food.

Looking Back

Much of my coaching has been about self-fulfilment and making a difference in the world. One of the most common things my clients would say was, “I’m ok but…” or “I feel guilty about wanting more when I already have so much”.

The ‘ok‘ they referred to was that they had

  • ok income,
  • food on the table,
  • a roof over their heads
  • and their children, if they had any, were at school or grown up and (mostly) independent’.

The ‘more‘ they referred to was the need to feel like they were making a difference, a sense of wanting to fulfil their potential, a need to rediscover themselves after being a wife, or mum, or a ‘insert career title here’.

The Missing Link

What many had been missing was a connection to something more, to their intuition to a faith, a belief, the universe or something bigger. They didn’t always know that straight away, but I can usually see it. They want a connection to the magic, the inner knowing, the connectedness.

Those things that you feel when you watch certain films like Avatar, or Practical Magic (two of my favourite films btw), or anything about sisterhood and deep connection to something outside of yourself. But you don’t know if it’s possible (it is).

So when the pandemic, and lockdown hit us, I knew I could help with some really practical stuff to support women through this difficult time, the basic needs parts to help keep them sane and ok (if not as energised and full of beans as before). To that end I’ve continued to work with existing clients, and I’ve run some free groups to do this.

But I wasn’t sure they would need the ‘fulfilment’ part, or the ‘magic’ or connection that they had previously craved and that I am really good at helping with!

What I now realise is that as we start to move forward and discover what life will look like in the coming months, this extra element is perhaps even more important.

Looking Inwards

I have reflected on difficult times in my life; major surgery, divorce, alienation from a loved one without explanation: and there’s a common thread. To cope with the difficulties in the moment, the changes and moving forward, I have delved in to my spirituality ever more deeply. 

With each challenge I have gained more faith, understanding, emotional intelligence, and resilience.

What’s The Secret To This?

Honestly, I don’t even know what I’d call it but it’s about truly stepping into your power and flow and being aligned with yourself.

And here’s what I do:

  • work on maintaining my energy: the physical side and the esoteric element (yes I do auras and chakras and Reiki)
  • work on my mindset and emotions: expressing myself and asking difficult questions, reading and challenging myself with personal development
  • accept myself for who I am right now in this moment, and I belief in my ability to move forward.
  • ask for help and support when I need it, from those I know love and trust to have my back.
  • work on my boundaries knowing when I can give to others and when I need to look after myself.
  • tap into wisdom, of all the work I’ve done over the years (and they have been many) of ancient ideas and philosophies.
  • question and analyse and pull things apart until they make sense, and I work to fill in any gaps.
  • trust, absolutely, that everything will be ok, that I will be ok.

These are not always easy to do, even when you know how, but they are what works. And I do them all the time, so that when times are tough, I am ready and don’t even need to think about them. And I know I always emerge from difficult situations feeling even more on track than I did before. 

These methods are summed up in three words for me.

Energy, Connection and Wisdom

These are the foundations of my pyramid of needs, and they underpin everything else.

They ensure I am always in alignment with my values and my mission.

No, they ARE my values and my mission.

And part of my journey, and my purpose, is to share what I have learnt.

As things become normalised, and we get used to changes that we’ve had to make, I do believe it is absolutely possible, and perhaps essential to look at self-fulfilment, even in a pandemic! That sense of purpose increases our resilience. Even if we can’t focus on it in the same way as we used to it is still highly valuable to work at it. 

Looking Forward

If any of this article has resonated and you’d like to see if coaching is a way forward for you, do drop me a message or book a free 45-minute call using the button in the menu.

If you’re missing some connection and would like to take part in my Thursday night Ladies Circle Night For Spiritual Discussion & Meditation – you can find out more here.

Helen Leathers

Transformational Women's Coach, Trainer, Speaker & Author

Combining a spiritual outlook, a pragmatic approach, and a sense of humour I want to help you remember who YOU are and reveal YOUR path so you can step on to it empowered, energised, inspired and guided.

What are your thoughts or questions? Let me know below


  1. Emer Cassidy

    Nice article

    • Helen

      Thank you Emer x


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