How are you doing at this time? If you’re like most people, you are feeling okay one minute and a bit freaked out, daunted or worried the next. All perfectly normal behaviour in the midst of a global pandemic. Keeping the balance between taking appropriate action, being in the moment and keeping the body and emotions calm really helps of course.
Here are some thoughts on how to proceed along with a free class, tips and resources to support you. Please share on to your friends and family – easy links for this are at the bottom of this page.
If you’ve been swinging between dealing with the here and now, and worrying about the future, you’re probably on par with many people. There are a few different opinions on this and I’ve given it some careful thought – right now the most useful place you could put your attention is in the present moment. I will write again about how to be thinking about the future, because of course there is going to be one – and a bright one at that – but today I want to encourage you to let that go and be in the here and now. Especially if your future-thinking currently involves either catastrophising or ‘What if-ing’. Neither of which will do you or your nervous system any favours.
There is enough to deal with right now, with kids coming out of schools, working from home, businesses closing, etc without us trying to figure out the rest of the story right now. The planet is basically being given a reason to stop, like really pause, and take a breath. So do that.
The pandemic will take its course, we will come out of lockdown, normality will return (hopefully a new and improved version which is my prediction) and all sorts of opportunities will present themselves. However, that is all happening later. Right now is where it’s at.
I’ve read about the power of gratitude for many years and recall numerous people talk about how it has helped them recover from depression, grief and illness. This week I am experiencing this on a whole new level. It feels unbelievably nourishing to recognise everything there is to be grateful for right now.
I’ve had regular waves of gratitude for being in New Zealand and the time lag that has given us to prepare and respond here. I feel gratitude for working from home and for my safe and comfortable environment. I’m grateful for my beautiful cat and her lovely company.
Today I’m feeling grateful for the proactive, discerning approach our government is taking to minimise the impact here as much as possible. I’m immensely grateful for the strong, wise leadership from Jacinda Ardern.
I’m grateful we can be connected through our phones, our inboxes and social media to help each other remember:
We’re all here.
We’re in this together and we can get through it together.
We are precious beings who are part of a much bigger story than this current challenging time.
We will come out of this situation with new levels of empathy, flexibility, appreciation and resilience.
We will all grow in ways we can’t even foresee right now.
All will be well.
On Saturday morning, after seeing so many frightened faces at the very packed supermarket and after briefly browsing the news headlines, I sat and cried for about half an hour. A week’s worth and a world’s worth of grief and empathy and fear rinsing through.
Some of my colleagues and mentors have been talking about this too – we’re all feeling moments of fear or grief, and we’re just making sure we move through them. And it’s changing all the time. One day might bring more fear or heaviness, another a sense of safety or ease, another with bursts of lightness and appreciation, or tiredness and worry – it’s all just being human.
We’re also responding to the collective consciousness and the pain of knowing someone else’s suffering. The waves of grief and upset I’ve felt in recent days have really been about that; the global sense of distress and vulnerability. It’s normal to feel sobs of grief over what is happening in places like Italy and Spain. It’s normal to feel emotional about having to close our schools and businesses and be in lockdown as an entire country. If you have a nervous system, and I promise you, you do, you have the potential to feel fear, dread and anxiety at different moments as well as relief, comfort and joy.
Be kind to yourself about all of that. Let yourself be human. Give yourself some space to be feeling what you’re feeling. Let yourself freak out for a moment or cry it out. We must let ourselves feel what we feel, grieve, cry, emote. Go for a walk, hug it out with someone (a carefully chosen someone, obviously!). Make space for your emotions.
Emotion = E (energy) in Motion so let it move, dear ones.
There is so much information, inspiration and catastrophisation out there on emails and in social media right now that I wanted to be sure I was adding something grounded, nourishing and as wise as possible to the airwaves. I will write more in the coming days, but for right now I’d like to offer these resources…
Free Online Class: Settling Your Nervous System in Unsettling Times
A 45 minute online class to help you support your nervous system to move out of fight-flight and into rest and comfort. Here I share a set of small, clever tools from a range of disciplines you can use anytime to calm your body and release feelings of fear, anxiety, rushing, agitation, paralysis, stress and so on.
Let’s Use Our Words to Power Our Way Through This Situation
Recently I wrote about the language we’re using around ‘social distancing’ which I feel we need to change – let’s call it physical distancing, sheltering or retreating. Why? Read here.
Finally, one of my teachers, Dr Richard Bolstad at Transformations, has created a collection of resources to support people at this time covering a vast range of topics from meditations and self-isolation instructions to looking after your marriage when staying together at home. Full resource page here.