About 10 nights ago, when we were just starting to implement different measures all over our world, I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn’t go back to sleep. I connected to my heart and was inspired to write a list of what I appreciated about my present circumstances. Today, I am ready to elaborate a bit on each point.
Fewer people around:
I’m the type of person who loves having space and has no problem enjoying silence or the sounds of nature. I truly savour the space around me and the quiet of the city.
More distance in the metro or in usually crowded streets:
I can actually count on it these days and there is relief in that for me. I realize that before all of this happened, I had to be protective of my “bubble” and as a result was always ready for possible “attacks”.
We’ve read it or heard it many times, that is the only thing we have control over really, but I believe that now, a lot of us are aware that it is the one thing we truly know….what is happening right this minute and therefore if we like what is happening, savour it!
We can overcome:
I work in a clinic and these days, patients only are admitted into our waiting room. For some, it’s a major source of anxiety at first, but once they leave, they realize they were able to go beyond the anxiety and do well under the circumstances. We are all a lot stronger than we think and can adapt more than expected if need be.
United in purpose:
We are all sharing an unprecedented – we keep hearing – time. We can strike a conversation with pretty much any stranger (at a safe distance) and know that we do have lots in common and all aspire to the same things. That almost makes us instant friends. Passing strangers (again, at a safe distance) on their healthy walks in my neighbourhood now includes smiles or little comments here and there. There’s a sense of community I never felt before. It warms my heart.
Drop into your heart:
I believe we are now intimately connected to our vulnerability on a daily basis….and in my book that makes us stronger, healthier, more balanced, more caring human beings.
Self-love as survival:
To keep that balance, taking care of ourselves like we may never have before is essential. Physical so choosing good foods and exercising regularly yes, but also mental health…so we’re talking about realizing what goes into our minds and how it affects our moods and energy level. Find what makes you laugh, what inspires you, what triggers your creativity, etc. Our survival depends on the combination we are each coming up with for ourselves during these times.
No more rush but awareness instead:
I used to have this almost default setting to rush through things or at least be as efficient as possible which often, in my mind, involved speed. The wiser me knew and knows better of course but somehow, there is still a pattern, most probably a deep-seated one that has “rush” as some type of default setting.
Well, right now, I laugh and relax when I am tempted to fast forward through a program to the most essential parts…..and I go “really Val? What else are you going to do? How about enjoying the whole thing as it was intended by the ones who created it? Let’s honour their work instead and see where that leads you.”
And again, in the metro, no rushing because there are fewer of us but also because we all need to be vigilant, therefore, aware of what we are doing and what is going on around us. We are definitely awake!
Generosity and creativity:
People are checking on their family and friends all over the planet, truly caring about their well-being, offering to help and finding, creating ways to bring joy, love, and laughter to their lives in a time of crisis. We’ve all seen and heard people joining their voices from their windows in Italy. Human beings at their very best.
Monitor what goes in (news):
I’ve mentioned it before in the self-love section but I believe it deserves its own paragraph. The World Health Organization even tells us to limit how much news we consume on any given day now! We all have the ability to choose what goes in, how often, in what way and monitor how it affects us and then adjust if need be. We have the power to pick and choose, just like at a buffet. How do we want to feel afterwards?
Kindness and patience in and out to truly care:
There’s no need to rush anymore so let’s give one another and ourselves the gift of patience and kindness. That way, we can truly take care of ourselves and others and contribute in the best way possible to a healthy environment.
When I stop the rushing, I find kindness and patience.
Feel what your body is telling you, appreciate it:
When I wake up in the morning, the second I am aware, there’s tension, like an engine vibrating inside of me. It’s very uncomfortable. So I apply techniques that I know and I get back to a calmer state.
I appreciate that this body is telling me that my mindset these days leads to tension more often than not and that every time, I get the opportunity to transform that into more serenity. Thank you for reminding me I am powerful and thanks for giving me warnings so that I can do something about going into a healthier direction before it gets too serious. So whenever I get little aches and pains, even some weird temporary ones, I get curious and try to understand the information I am being given because experience has shown me that my body is a wise and precious guide.
How to love and show it in different ways:
Because of social distancing, we’ve got to find new ways to express our love and appreciation to our loved ones, so send kisses over video-chats even if that’s not something you’ve ever done or never thought you would do, use different words, be more thoughtful, more often. We’ve got to get creative to bridge the physical gaps and use the power of our hearts to reach across the distance, whatever it is. So exercising our hearts….I’m happy we get to do that.
How to respect and support each other’s choices:
Not so easy at a time when definitions vary widely from one individual to another on what is the right thing to do to contribute to the protection of the whole; or because we don’t all get to the same conclusion at the same time. Some get there fast, some take longer. But variety is not new. Variety gives us information and choices, and in a crisis, that is invaluable.
Cry and laugh = mental, physical and psychological hygiene:
Need I say more? I make it a point to do both, regularly if that is what the body seems to be calling for…and then I’ve got room for more life.
Reach out for faith (surrender) and intuition:
I know, not knowing is most unsettling and having to change and adapt constantly can be, at first, extremely difficult on our nervous system. However, as mentioned above, we have an amazing capacity for adaptation. As a friend of mine used to say: “it is what it is”.
In other words, my experience has shown that surrendering and trusting that everything is an opportunity leads to what feels like miracles.