Hello there fellow Resourceful and Hopeful ones!
There is no doubt that these times are unlike any we have ever seen before. This crisis has stirred up an incredible amount of fear, uncertainty, and has left people wondering if the future has any light in its tunnel at all. People become suspicious of other humans, panic and hoard, as moods flair, and depression sets in. The fear only mounts with all of the overwhelming news reports.
However, people are getting outside, walking more, doing creative things, and reconnecting with their loved ones. There seems to be a surge of unity in families and in our country, along with people discovering new ways to create income, spread joy on the internet, and even have virtual parties and celebrations. I, for one, have met neighbors that I never knew before because we are sitting on our porch and relaxing outside more than we ever did before.
So much good coming out of this.
I have been feeling a sense of guilt for looking at the "bright side". I know that the death toll in the U.S. is currently at 56,000, that millions have lost their jobs and businesses are having to shut their doors. This has created a conundrum for me, because I am trying to stay in a positive mindset, grow and educate myself spiritually and professionally. I know that if I focus too long or hard on the circumstances, the compassion and grief I feel would overtake my emotions. Then I wouldn't be any use to anyone. In reality, it doesn't help those who have lost their jobs, businesses, or loved ones if everyone succumbed to a state of depression.
I firmly believe how we respond to this pandemic emotionally and practically as individuals is monumentally important, and might even determine how those in our sphere of influence and even the world, recovers.
So I want to ask you a few questions:
Does it help you or serve you in any way to sit at home and worry and fret over the virus?
Does it protect you to worry?
Does it give you a superpower-protective shield?
Of course not. Always remember that worry, fear, and fretting is a counterproductive action.
Does complaining, bitching and moaning about having to follow the stay at home orders, help you change things in any way?
Does it make you strong? Powerful? Immune to the virus?
Again, of course not. It only serves to cause you to feel uneasy, anxious and agitated. Yet I have found myself, at times, falling into both worry and complaining. It's human. But it also doesn't serve my life, nor help others.
Here are two words are going to help you in any area of your life: CHOICE and ACTION.
It all begins with choice.
If you feel fear or depression begin to overtake your thoughts, you have to immediately choose to take action against them. Replace them with more calming and productive thoughts.
Where the mind goes, energy flows.
One way you can do that is by thinking of it like the angel and devil on your shoulders. The little angel wants you to keep strong, positive and loving thoughts running in your mind at all times, but the other guy... all he wants you to do is be afraid, panic and look at your situation with a grim countenance.
But you have all the control. You have the power, and you have the choice.
immediately kick that little devil to the curb and say, "No! I refuse to fear, I refuse to panic, I refuse to fall into depression!". There is the CHOICE. To immediately take charge of your thoughts.
Then comes ACTION. Switch directions and begin affirmations of faith, prayer, call a friend, start a new positive project, or switch your focus by going to YouTube listen to inspirational speakers like Oprah,Tony Robbins, or others.
During this time we have inside our homes take time to build up your spirit, soul and body. Your family needs you and we all need to stay strong so that when this is over, we are not knocked down on our asses, but are bad asses that can get through anything! And that is the beauty of all this. We have the time to stop, breathe, and take a deep breath and see what is really important. Because we MUST be there for one another! There are those that have not been adversely affected. So count your blessings. There are also those that have, and we need to help shore them up after all of this. Don't leave it to the actors, politicians or the pastors. You have a part to play in how we recover as a nation and on the Earth.
Everything in our life has been and will be determined by our choices and actions (if you want more on that, get my book), but for this article my focus is on us all pulling together to love and support one another. People Touching People, without really touching. Right now it is so important that we build ourselves up strong, find joy in unspeakable sadness, and reach out to others.
"Say what? Hello?! Shelly... We're in our houses!" I am not advocating gathering in groups, but even in our homes we can still touch people!!
We can find ways to "reach out and touch" someone. For those of you that were born before the 80's, you probably remember the commercial campaign from Bell Telephone "reach out and touch someone"? For a little nostalgia, the link to one of the commercials is below, after the article.
Reach out by phone and make contact with our friends and our family by telephone, FaceTime or Skype for just a quick check -in. Everyone has the capability to do this!
Again, it is a matter of choice. Then you put action to that choice!
There might be someone that you call that is feeling a little lonely that day, or just needs to hear the voice of someone else besides their family. Maybe they have a need and they are afraid of reaching out to ask. I cannot stress enough how important it is right now that we get out our phone contacts, and go down the list. Even if you haven't talked to the person in a while. Call them, and just let them know you're thinking about them.
I have had some very pleasant coffee visits with my friends through Facetime. We schedule a time to meet and then sit together (no bras or make up) and chat about what we have been doing, share some struggles and laugh. It's like being together. Then I call others, chat, or leave messages for them to let them know I am thinking about them.
Another idea is to write an actual letter to someone. Not an email. Not a text. An actual written letter! Stick a stamp on it and put it in the mail. Imagine how a hand written letter from you will brighten their day!
We can't have our family over for dinner or go out to eat with friends. But what we CAN DO is call them.
CHOICE & ACTION
Questions: What is stopping you from one or two calls a day? NOT TEXTS!
Or writing a letter? NOT EMAILS!
We have to check in on one another. We have to not allow ourselves to be hardened by this and make sure our kindness, strength, and love prevails. And it takes choice and it takes action. Yes, there is a great deal going on in the world that we seem to have no control over. But you can choose to build yourself strong with joy, gratitude and compassion so you can be a light to those around you.
But it's not just for others, it's for you too.
You need this. I need this.
People Touching People can still happen. And it is necessary.
We just have to do it a little differently now.