As I sit in my home during the current COVID-19- related state of emergency, I am confronted with the reality that there is a lot of time on my hands to think, and a lot of fodder to think upon. From daily news announcements, to the online commentary and “non-news”, it would seem that there is no way to talk about anything without the interwoven themes of social distancing and the threats to our constitutional rights. For those who have engaged in the intelligent pursuit of trying to make sense of the world we live in, and have considered yourself as “awake” to an understanding of the powers which govern, there is a barrage of trigger words and phrases which may elicit more fear and powerlessness than you know what to do with.
If this is you, I would like to take a moment of sanity and let you know that you matter and the real struggle you face is seen. You have, likely, put effort into your pursuit of truth and you are familiar with the depression that can happen when considering dark themes of the depravity that is discovered. And you care. That is the reason for your awakening. But what about you? What about the sleepless nights? What about the mornings of waking up, only to find that the current state is still real and this is still the world you are living in. And maybe you are isolated, and this is only making mental health matters worse.
While it is reasonable to enlist friends to care ABOUT you and the downward spiral that you are aware of, it is only you who can care FOR you and your own well-being. Put simply, we have to take the responsibility for our own mental and emotional well-being. Here are some contemplations to help stay centered during these strange days.
Regardless of the story of mankind, I have my own values and focus for the meaning of my life:
This truth is a simple one. You didn’t create this mess and you do not have the power, nor the burden to “unmake” this mess. You do, however, have the power to live a loving, kind, compassionate and connected life, as you feel moved. At the end of your days, what is it that is going to determine that you have lived out your calling as a man or a woman? Likely, it will be things such as the serenity of knowing you have been a beacon of peace, kindness, wisdom, and other life-giving attributes, to the loved ones in your life. It is of the utmost importance that fear does not rob your mission and importance in the lives of others.
I will never be in the boat alone:
It is a great big boat. We are all in it. Every last human currently on the planet is in this with you. Embrace the power of knowing that, even though fear wants to send a message of loneliness, that it will never truly be your fate. Reach out for community. Stay in touch with the people you love. Nurture and maintain your own awareness of being in the multitudes and avoiding habits of emotional isolation, even when being physically alone.
“This” is not my choice but THIS is:
Here is a contemplation in which you are invited to separate yourself emotionally from the state of this world. The place we find ourselves in as a society is certainly not a reality that you desire. Staying home and lacking resources was not your dream, nor your intention of how to spend your Springtime 2020. This was not your strategy. Perhaps, like my family, you cancelled a Spring Break vacation.
The second part of this contemplation is in regards to this one day you find yourself in. I invite you to ask, “What do I choose for today?”. As an example, today, I will choose to stay home, call my friend, clean my shower and bake a new casserole recipe. Notice this. I chose to “stay home”. I don’t have to like it, but today, I will choose it none-the-less. Just today. Always contemplate in small bites. Tomorrow will bring choices of its own. Take this time to choose productive activities that make life a better place to live in.
I will enjoy this day:
There is no law or Governor’s decree against joy. There never will be. This is the contemplation in which I recommend that you ask yourself; “What will I enjoy today?”.
Whether it’s that best-selling novel you never read, or the art project that never got started, the opportunity for joy is yours and your responsibility. Others can not, and will not deliver this to you. There is a subconscious catastrophic thought that can happen when attempting to move cognition in this direction. It is, “What am I doing; having fun when all of this is happening in the world?”. It’s a fear-statement related to not being prepared for a correct response or protection. Here is where an alignment of self talk can go a long way. “Neither my joy, nor my lack of joy, will have an effect on world events”. Adopting this balance may mean establishing mantra, the repetition of truthful, yet counter-fear statements, such as this one regarding joy.
So friend, having no surety as to when life will return to normal, please know that you are never in this alone, and that your peace and happiness matter. And, in the event that the task of aligning thoughts and feelings in balanced ways is not going well, a GR TherapyGroup clinician would be glad to come alongside you. Contact us anytime for online counseling.