This is how you can make the best out of the current global situation (practically & spiritually):
We are experiencing an unprecedented opportunity where scientists, governments and general awareness are making obvious the importance of self-isolation.
And we could see this as a terrible thing… and ride the fear-and-panic-train. (And hey! It is okay if you do. No judgement. We are human.)
However, when you are done processing those heavy emotions, we can choose to see this as an opportunity:
1) TO SPEND TIME WITH OURSELVES
We spend most of our time in “Go-Mode”, meaning that our attention, energy and brainpower is focused on things that we have to do.
From house chores to work, to catering to friends and family, organizing our taxes, running a business, etc.
For those without a meditation or journaling practice, the time they spend WITH themselves is next to ZERO (Netflix, videogames, or distractions don’t count).
Imagine how hard it would be to love and develop a deep trust towards someone you don’t know.
Someone you rarely spend time with.
Someone you forget about often…
Very difficult right?
Don’t let that someone be you.
And we wonder why Self-love and Self-care is in such a decline in today’s world.
The first step is to spend more time with ourselves.
With our thoughts.
With our emotions.
And this is a GREAT opportunity to start doing so.
2) TO ORGANIZE AND CLEAN OUR HOME
Work and our daily life can be consuming to the point that our homes become the place we sleep and cook (sometimes).
Yet the chores can easily pile up and the storage room can look like a war zone.
This is a great time to ensure that our physical space reflects our ideal internal one.
So go through those corners you never clean, those closests you rarely open, those drawers that carry mysteries within them and get rid of everything that is not essential. (You’ll be surprised at the expired condiments, food, cleaning products and much more that you find).
Take a moment to also take out every piece of clothing that you don’t use anymore.
This is a good opportunity for a big reset!
Imagine how you’d feel if after the pandemic is over, your environment (together with your mindset, emotions and body) is a reflection of a fresh start.
3) TO REFLECT ON WHAT IS MEANINGFUL AND WHAT IS NOT
In times like these we are reminded of the things that matter.
What’s the point of great wealth, fame and popularity if we are isolated?
Or what’s the goal of working so much when the economies come to a sudden halt?
Where do the Instagram likes go when your life is confined to a few walls?
Where does the stress from work deadlines is replaced by a slow-paced work (or even the absence of it!)
On the other hand, if you feel uneasy at the idea of being by yourself, it is a good time to reflect on the importance of your mental health, self-care, mindset and emotional well-being.
You may have also noticed how connected and beautiful (or not) your closest relationships are.
Being stuck at home can feel like a vacation if you’re together with the right people… or it can feel like a life sentence
If your relationships are in good condition, enjoy!
If not, this is a chance for you to sort things out (check point 5)
Take this time to see (in the same way you did with your home) what in your life is essential and what isn’t.
What friendships have ran past their expiration date and are just stinking up the house and what relationships are healthy and needed. What habits are too old and ready to be let go of and what others are great companions.
4) TO JOURNAL ABOUT OUR CURRENT EMOTIONS
Journaling can be an incredible tool for self-reflection.
It slows down our thinking to the speed of our writing, giving us a window of opportunity to observe our thoughts and emotions in slow motion.
If you are going through fear and anxiety, know that this is okay.
It is a new and uncertain experience and many are at risk.
However, know that there are healthier and more useful emotions available to you at this moment.
Emotions that will not compromise your immune system.
So feel free to journal about your powerlessness, anger, frustration, fear, confusion and any other dense emotion you have.
And when you are done, thank yourself for acknowledging them and then ask yourself
“Okay. And NOW, what do I want to create? What do I choose to create?”
Journaling can help you plan how you will spend this time in self-isolation. It can become a place for brainstorming about how you can make the best out of this time, so instead of panicking and stocking up on toilet paper, these are also good things you could stock up on:
- Musical Instruments (This is a GREAT time to learn, play and practice)
- Colouring Books / Puzzles / Sudokus
- Art Supplies (paints, brushes, paper, canvas, colours, thread for crochet, etc.)
- Board games
Imagine the difference in the quality of being, feeling and living between the person who stocked up on toilet paper and soap, and the one who mindfully bought those items yet stocked up on art supplies and board games.
One person fed nothing but their fears (and kept his butt crystal clean) while the other used this as a time to nourish creativity, interpersonal connections and abandoned hobbies.
5) TO SEND LETTERS OF APOLOGIES, FORGIVENESS, GRATITUDE AND LOVE
It is important to be aware of the worst-case-scenario: People close to you dying or , knock on wood, you dying.
So why wait until it is too late, we are too agitated and the world is collapsing to take inventory of our lives and settle our affairs?
Two years ago I went on a Vision Quest where for 4 days and nights I camped out in the mountain forests with nothing but water and a hammock.
During this rite of passage, on the full moon of the last day fasting the shaman had previously instructed us to do something called “The Death Lodge” ritual.
This meant waking up that day with the embodied conviction that when the moon was at its fullest, we’d die.
It forced me to acknowledge every mistake I have made in my life, to review every person I had hurt, every word I used to offend, every relationship I damaged.
It forced me to see the areas where I betrayed myself (for money, sex, power, validation, etc.) And the way in which I had poured my attention in relationships that were not nourishing while abandoning my family and loved ones.
It also forced me to shake hands with the good deeds I did, the risks I took and the beauty I experienced.
Long story short, it was a day full of cleansing: Crying, Praying, Forgiving and asking for forgiveness.
I was in the middle of nature without contact so I couldn’t message anyone, but from the depth of my soul I made peace with everyone I have loved and hurt, and I renewed my appreciation for the life I had lived.
I discovered in fact that being conscious of death – especially a possibly close and soon one – is one of the best gifts towards a full life.
So I invite you to use the current global situation as an opportunity to take inventory of your life and clean things up.
You don’t know if that person you hurt (and their family) years ago will make it through this.
You don’t know if your loved ones will all be safe.
You don’t know how things will look like…
So what a better way to foster peace of mind than to show love to those we deeply love, forgive those who hurt us, ask for forgiveness to those we have hurt and give thanks for the beautiful and mysterious ride that is this thing we call life!
PS1: If you enjoyed this you will probably like THIS POST where we explore the beauty of being human.
PS2: If you enjoyed this, this was part of today’s Mindful Monday’s Newsletter. It is a space where I share practical, grounded spirituality and useful lessons on becoming a self-authorized, badass human.
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