Redirecting our fear of the unknown and letting go of the way things ‘used to be’ — allows us to see what is trying to be seen, what ‘can be’
Let’s face it, things feel totally whacky right now. In what seemed like a very short period of time, life as we knew it was abruptly flipped upside down — no more business as usual, almost everything disrupted.
In times when you-know-what-hits-the-fan…our first instinct is often to scramble to put the pieces back together. But what if everything was not meant to go back to ‘business as usual’, what if instead we were meant to sit in stillness, breathe, assess and allow something else to blossom within us? What if we are not supposed to just ‘get through this’ but rather ‘go through it’?
I’ll admit, I definitely was one of those who thought it would pass and never could have imagined this — whatever ‘this’ is. And as I’ve written in the last few blogs, I did get onboard — got provisions, took precautions and ultimately hunkered down with my family responsibly. It went from feeling like I was preparing for a blizzard to suddenly feeling the enormity of this ever-evolving global shift.
But here’s the thing: I’m OK. Really OK. And so are you, if you choose to be.
No, I don’t have any superpowers and I’ll refrain from the spiritual posturing that implies that any of us is above this. We’re not. We’re human and we’re marching through this sometimes glorious, sometimes messy experience together — feeling the feels as we go. Different things will arise for each of us in different ways.
And while I may not be hurting in one aspect, I know that others are and vice versa. If one is hurting, we are all hurting. Now more than ever, we are recognizing our interconnectedness as individuals, communities and the planet. There is no separateness, no us versus them.
The truth is that I definitely got triggered initially. My money fears stormed through the door like uninvited guests and took a seat at my dining room table. During those first days, I fed them. But alas, I grew weary and declared, ENOUGH! Out with you all!
Our wounds and limited thinking can show up at the front door unannounced at any point (and often do). However, here’s the kicker — we aren’t obliged to invite them in. The reality is that sitting here worrying about potential financial Armageddon wouldn’t prevent it from happening. Could I control it? No. Could I stop it? No. So, should I sit here and torture myself with a slew of worst-case-scenarios? No and more No.
What are we left with? Asking ourselves, what CAN I do.
It presented me with a gift in a round-about manner — a reminder of where to look, what needed my attention, what needed my self-compassion. This is part of my emotional healing, my spiritual work, my life journey. My job is recognizing it. And when we get quiet, we can hear what is calling to us. We can reclaim the unfinished business.
A lot is coming up for each of us right now. The real question is; what are you going to do with it?
I bet if you are anything like me…your inbox has been bombarded by COVID-19 messages. In some ways the Internet and social media feeds have been enormously helpful in spreading useful information. But many have been equally fear-inducing and distracting. The bottom line is that we all have to settle into these current circumstances the best we can, and make peace with it. But we must also remind ourselves of our power to navigate it all — to steer the ship in the direction we desire.
Personally, I’m being mindful of how much news I consume, despite its seduction. I say, get the soundbites and move on. Be informed but don’t get sucked down the rabbit hole. Sure we can repeat our old patterns. We can stay busy. We can self-medicate. Or we can embrace this collective exhale. As we are being forced to stay home, we are also being called to reflect and to go inward. It is an opportunity to listen and to look around, most of all to let go of all that isn’t serving your highest good and potential.
After the distractions are removed, the layers and masks we put on when we go out into the world, the make-up, nail polish and hair dyes — who are we underneath it all?
A friend and I joked about how we’d finally begin to see everyone’s true hair color (I wasn’t laughing, ha!). But seriously, we are gaining back a great deal of time through this strange moment.
I’ve found myself feeling very sensitive and emotional in a heart-opening way. I’ve shed tears… we all have in our house. But I have to say they have been some of the most beautiful, sentimental tears that have connected our family in profound ways. They have grounded us and reminded us of the things that are most important — the things that matter. We have allowed ourselves to feel things that we have shoved aside.
And like others, I’ve had to let go of a lot: the freedom to move about — to go to yoga class, the gym or share a meal with friends. I cancelled a much anticipated vacation to London with my Mom and sister, postponed a Best Self business program launch, and was forced to get creative in figuring out how to celebrate my family’s Aries birthdays (including my own). I think you get it. Our creature comforts have been removed. But we’re all in a collective pause. Dare I say, there has been something nice about it? Actually…really nice.
When I stopped reacting to every newsflash and ceased from subscribing to the scarcity mentality (got toilet paper?) — my entire nervous system calmed down.
When I began to reclaim the time that used to be filled with running around in and out — life actually felt spacious. In fact, it’s beginning to feel like a nurturing creative incubator. Many things that have dropped off aren’t even missed.
It didn’t happen overnight. I grappled with both my fear and my faith. And yet, I decided to wage my bet on hope and the things that made me feel good. It was OK not to know the outcome.
I could give you lists of things to do to stay calm and focused, to feed yourself body, mind and spirit, to refrain from resisting the current status quo, etc. — but you actually don’t need any of it. While it’s nice to receive useful suggestions from others who are navigating the same — they aren’t you, walking through your life, your house, your relationships, your head. You simply need to embrace this time and space with yourself.
Start by answering these questions:
What do I want life to look like on the other side of this?
And who do I want to be at that point?
Where am I being called to look?
Is there something within me that I’ve been ignoring, pushing off for another day?
We run through this life at an over-scheduled, frenzied pace. What if we were to embrace this experience to be home with ourselves, our families and our pets as a great reset? Have you noticed a new awareness or heightened senses? Your best defense is to refrain from resistance. Look your fears in the face. Remind them who’s boss and who calls the shots around here. I’m serious.
The moment you clear space, something else arrives…new clarity comes to the surface, a new vision for your life. It can start as a subtle whisper…Uh, can you speak up? What did you say? But suddenly it will grow stronger, louder, more definitive. Go there.
I’m not making light of the enormous adjustments many have had to make, like working from home for the first time (if you are fortunate enough to still have work), dealing with home-schooling of children (especially little ones) and having to face the realities of our relationships and fears.
I work from home so there were no big shifts there. I love working with my partner so no added conflict there. Yes, my laundry, dishwashing, food prepping quotient increased drastically with the return of the college sophomore, but be still my Momma heart. My dining room has been transformed into a college classroom, so be it. The guys created a gym/workout space in our unfinished basement. This is a time that requires flexibility, but also provides us with the opportunity to push forward rather than back.
I’m giving my energy to new thought patterns, new horizons, both personally and professionally and things are percolating big time. Because that’s how it works. There are things I don’t want to return to. When I look around my house and my life now, I see it through new eyes and a new lens.
Perhaps there is no coincidence that this is occurring during Spring, the season of awakening and rebirth. Take a big restorative breathe and ask what is awakening within…don’t be afraid. Lean in and listen. Your beautiful soul will never lead you astray.
Trust in your resilience — trust in your ability to awaken dormant forces within — trust in your knowing what you need.
The day before an unexpected spring snowstorm, I ran outside to collect some forsythia branches from my backyard. I feared that they were vulnerable. Though they are referred to as the ‘Woodstock weed’ and may be pedestrian to some — I think they are glorious. They are the first to bloom, our entree into a new season and they brighten our landscape with their bold yellow flowers.
A few years ago, a cold snap and snow took them down…no flowers bloomed. Honestly, in the midst of this current situation…I couldn’t handle that. I didn’t want one other thing taken away…so I brought them in. But they did in fact survive outside…and so will we.
If this experience thus far has shown us anything — it is that we are all vulnerable, life can shift in an instant — but it also reminds us of our resiliency and our ability to reconnect with our Best Selves, each other and to awaken to all that is possible.
In the rush to return to normal, use this time to consider which parts of normal are worth rushing back to.— Dave Hollis
Has this disruption stirred any possibility within you — any notion that some things aren’t meant to go back as they once were? Please let us know how you are experiencing this time of quarantine and what is coming up for you in the comments below. This is the place we can commune and embrace, uplift and hold one another.