Staying in the Now…
There’s a misconception that focusing on the positive means we’re in denial about the struggles we’re facing. That’s not true. We’re all a little bit meshugenah, screwed up, right now. And COVID-19, it’s a serious topic. We want to protect ourselves and protect each other — but staying home can be terrifying for some of us as well. We can’t go to work. We feel disconnected. There’s an increase in many issues related to mental health, and we need to acknowledge all that. This is a heartbreaking time for a lot of people in a lot of ways.
But even when we’re sitting in the middle of it, there’s still a choice — a choice to feel the fear, and then decide to do something positive. One thing I’m concentrating on these days is creating opportunities for us to come together and be together in community. Yes, it’s online and it may not be a hug in person from your BFF, but it still can be high vibe. We can still use the internet to create something magical.
These two things — the fear and the high vibe — can co-exist.
And that’s what we need to practice. It’s a new skill for us to learn: Being IN the world, but not OF the world — and not being taken hostage by what the world is going through right now. This allows us to stay in alignment with our highest good.
The key to not letting the fear overwhelm us is to focus on today and stay in the 24 hours that we are being given right now. Freaking out or panicking doesn’t help. What also doesn’t help is telling yourself, “Don’t feel scared.” It might make intellectual sense, but it doesn’t work! We can accept the fear, let it move through us, and then move past it.
We can’t stare into the big maw of the future, the big hole, and say, “Oh my god, this is neverending… “ because this WILL pass. What’s important is to look at the 24 hours in front of us, not looking at the panic. We need to reach out to others, being more compassionate and kind, and being kind to ourselves as well.
Being kind to ourselves means remembering that we can help others, but we’ve got to take care of ourselves first. Remember the oxygen mask — you have to secure yours before assisting others! You need to say to yourself, “I have to take care of me, then I can take care of you.” That’s accountability, to do whatever we need to in order to create our support, so we can show up and help others. Self-care is doing our own work and allowing others to do theirs.
It sounds selfish, but it’s not selfishness like, “Give me all the toilet paper!” It’s not about hoarding everything for ourselves and keeping it from others. Instead, it’s the complete opposite.
When you are in self-care, you are trusting the Universe. That is the key — to trust that the Universe is going to give you prompts and lead you to your next right step.
You trust that the Universe will lead you to a blog post like this to support you.
You trust that the Universe will give you a message from Spirit, and you’ll recognize it.
You trust that you can show up and you’ll have what you need, when you need it.
This is a learning time. During this period, we’re all being taught lessons, whether we want them or not! Lessons about showing up. Lessons about supporting others. Lessons about holding to our highest good, even in scary times. Lessons about being flexible.
And talk about needing to be flexible! I honestly didn’t realize how rigid I was around the expectations I had that my world had to work a certain way until all this happened.
My scheduling was so specific! I would do my shopping like a European does because I like to get out of the house. So I’d buy my vegetables every other day, rather than once a week. We never had food in the house because I liked things fresh, and living near farms I have taken this for granted. And yes I am aware of the privilege I have underlying this option.
And now… My whole routine is upside-down.! We’re supposed to stay home, to do one big shopping trip all at once, to stock up. And suddenly, I was faced with the fear at first of having these rigid expectations about how my life was supposed to work. And things just weren’t working that way. Plus I doubled up on food donations and other charities because I am able. That really has kept me grounded in the truth that there are those of us who have lives that are very different from others who are suffering so much more.
Maybe you can relate. What to do now?
It can be jarring!
But when we can stay flexible, it allows us to be curious. It allows us to say, “If I am flexible about these changes and give myself time to get used to it, I could actually be more creative. I could trust the Universe.”
Remember — you don’t have to do it all at once. You can trust the Universe just for today. You can be a little flexible, just for today. You can stay in the here and now, just for today.
Don’t worry so much about tomorrow. Live in today.
Now, I didn’t make that up. That’s something I’ve learned from being in recovery for 34 years! This is what is offered in 12-Step programs, and that concept well, that’s what saved my life, staying in today. I would ask myself every day, “What do I need to do to stay on track TODAY so I don’t f—- things up?” Then I’d pull a card, and I’d do just that.
That’s the key. Focus on here. Focus on now. Focus on one thing. When you get ahead of yourself, you lose your power. We can’t do anything about tomorrow, but we can do something about the here and now.
That’s where the power is — in the NOW.
Breathe in. As you breathe out, say, “I trust you.” Our business is to stay connected to Spirit, to ask what is in the highest good for you and for me, to ask what’s in store for us in this moment.
That’s all we need to do, and if you don’t trust the universe or even yourself, act as if. There is always grace and meaning that comes from that.