Hello, everyone – How are you doing? I hope everyone is well and taking good care of themselves during this extremely stressful time!
As may be true for you, I’ve been struggling off and on lately with feeling “stuck”, depressed, angry, stressed….. focused too much on everything that is wrong and hanging out too much in my own head! But today (as usually happens when you need a new perspective), I was listening to the message from my spiritual community (Aldea) and it was the story of the 6 blind men and the elephant. It’s an old and favorite parable about what happens when we notice only one piece of something larger and think we know the whole story, the whole Truth.
It was a very good “Aha!” moment for me because that’s where I have been stuck. I have been focused on one piece of the puzzle – whether it’s about the pandemic, politics, the world, the future – I have been seeing one small piece and getting stuck there. The part that I am seeing is NOT the entire elephant, and I can’t understand what an elephant is by only seeing/feeling one part. The message helped me pull back and realize that no matter what the situation, there is a larger puzzle to be discerned. I may not know what that puzzle is, but simply knowing that there is always more to understand, more to know, more to discover, helps me to become more fluid, less rigid.
I also listened today to a favorite podcast: Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris. I highly recommend his podcast, and today’s interview was with David Kessler, a therapist, and author on grief. He talked about how many people are experiencing grief in all its phases, colors and nuances, but don’t know how to name it. Again, it was a message I needed to hear and a couple of useful take-aways from this interview I’d like to share:
- Learn to just feel your feelings whatever they are, acknowledge them, let them wash through you and they will pass. The more you try to outrun or judge your feelings, the more “stuck” in them you can get.
- Moving your body helps to process emotions. I am now walking every day at the least. I listen to my podcast and let whatever is going on for me just be. I know that some folks simply can’t get out and walk, but on YouTube, there are many free classes and exercises in things like qi gong, yoga, Pilates, meditations, etc. that will serve the same purpose.
- Sharing your feelings with others is another important thing – you are not alone! Not everyone is handling this pandemic and all of its ramifications perfectly, amicably, steadily, and with grace all the time. Find small moments of peace, and reach out to others.
We all tend to get stuck in our story – actually, just one page of that story perhaps — forgetting that the story/Life is ongoing, ever-unfolding and ever-changing. This will pass. Hopefully, as individuals and as a nation, we will learn a more compassionate and cooperative way to live.
Lastly, but certainly not the least, LAUGH. People are posting the most hilarious and creative things online! I highly recommend the Pluto Living channel on YouTube – you will fall in love with Pluto, a miniature schnauzer who gives “advice from the 4-leggeds to the 2-leggeds.” My neighbor, who is super creative, brings joy and laughter to the neighborhood with her Bear Scenes every day. The Bear’s name is “Carl” and he is posed each day in a new scene with free goodies for the children. Not only is Carl a delight, but my neighbor’s generosity and creativity are beautiful! Here are some photos of “Carl”.
Thanks for reading! Let me know what recommendations you have for managing and thriving during these times. Stay safe, find joy, be at peace. Love and Light, Kathleen
“Hearts open, hands washed, love on.” Brene Brown