The long and winding road: Lockdown advice from three motivational speakers

The days blend into one. COVID-19 life, as we know it, has become one of constant repetition.

It can be hard to find motivation in pretty much anything under lockdown.

After interviewing three motivational speakers for Mancunian Matters, it quickly became evident that they undoubtedly have the necessary tips and advice to boost morale amidst a global pandemic.

Ranging from business strategies to mental health to goal-setting: these motivational speakers have shared the essential ways of keeping and staying motivated in lockdown.


A specialist in business, Campbell Macpherson has been working within the industry for nearly thirty years. Whilst he is primarily known in the business world, Macpherson has also revealed his lockdown advice for the general public.

“Enjoy the calm. I’ve seen so many posts from social media gurus and life coaches that say ‘this is your opportunity’ to play the piano and write the book you’ve always wanted to, and whilst that is good, this is actually the time to enjoy the calm.

“You’ve got the time to actually call up friends you haven’t spoken to for so long. You’ve got the time to sit and contemplate.

“If you’re in a safe place, there’s no need to be rushing around and worried: just enjoy the calm.”

Having won at the 2018 Business Book Awards with The Change Catalyst, Macpherson has also added his expert advice for the business-orientated audience in lockdown.

“Now is the time to plan. Enjoy the calm but actually now is the time to plan how you’re going to take off. You’ve studied the plane, you’ve landed the plane, now plan for takeoff because the world will be very different in the future.

“Is your strategy fit for purpose? Are you really clear about why you exist, and for whom, and why people would choose you? Do you have a digital strategy? Do you have a sustainability strategy?

“Now is the time to put those things together because you’re not so frantic with your day job.”


Maria Mander specialises in positive well-being, aiming to incorporate a culture of wellness & positivity into the workplace.

A Reiki practitioner, mindfulness tutor, and qualified life coach, Mander has emphasised the importance of mental health during this time.

Mander takes direct inspiration from the new economics foundation’s guide on wellbeing & incorporates their ways for wellbeing into her own advice.

“First of all, it’s connect. Making sure you’re connected to your friends, colleagues and family. I think that’s absolutely key to supporting your mental wellbeing.

“The second one is exercise. Make sure you’re exercising every day and be creative with that.

“Take notice, use this time. You’re never going to get this time again. Declutter your house, read a book or rediscover an old hobby: use this time to do all those things you never get a chance to do.”

Mander has also stressed the importance of disengaging with the news so often, enhancing your ability to maintain your wellbeing and mental health.

“Tune out of the news. Watch the news once a day but try and tune out of it so you’re not living in constant anxiety and fear.”


David Hyner is a renowned specialist in goal setting & motivation. Therefore, it’s no surprise that Hyner values this status of lockdown as a period where people can start setting their own goals.

“Set yourself a big, fat, hairy goal. A massive goal.

“Do not set a realistic and achievable target, because that’s what everybody does.

“The top 3% of people: be it business, sport or science; the most effective people on the planet set big goals.

“Set a big goal, break it down into realistic & achievable steps. If you’ve got a massive goal and everything is realistic and achievable, nothing’s stopping you.”

Having previously hosted radio shows on positivity for the BBC, Hyner notes that a source of positive thinking can come from helping others during this time.

“Take personal responsibility, that could even mean doing something for somebody else. 

“Doing something that means you have to get out of bed at 7 am because you have to take an old lady’s dog down the road every single day. Do something that gives you a sense of responsibility.

“It keeps the mind absolutely switched on.”

Main image courtesy of Manchesterphotos via WikiMedia Commons, with thanks.

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