Greetings fellow mindful travelers!
Given the recent events in the world, I have been inspired to write more often, so here is a bonus newsletter that I felt inspired to write about all the changes in the world.
Like most things in life, it is not what happens to us, but how we respond to what happens to us that determines if we grow and expand or stay stuck in our same patterns.
The coronavirus is no different. I have a personal mantra that everything that comes my way is for my growth and personal expansion, even if it (and perhaps especially if) it doesn’t feel comfortable.
It is only when we step outside our comfort zone (and also stay in our self-care zone) that we learn and grow best.
So anytime I feel uncomfortable, I also know there is something here to learn.
With that said, here are 5 ways that the coronavirus is helping me (and all of us) expand our consciousness.
1. We are forced to be more in the present moment and accept that we don’t know what is going to happen next.
As we face this ever evolving situation, we can watch our minds try to predict what is going to happen next, but ultimately we just don’t know.
It is an interesting exercise to just sit and watch your mind make all sorts of predictions about the future.
After a while we may realize that the mind, although doing it’s best to keep us safe, is limited in how well it can serve us here.
This situation has given us the opportunity to let go of mental projections, return to the present, and embrace our ability to be psychologically flexible.
2. We can see that our fear is not the entirety of who we are.
With fear being ever present right now, it can be easy to get lost in it all and let it take over our lives. And we can always take a step back into our observer-self where there is an ever present “I am OK.”
From this place, we can watch our fear which says “Everything is not OK.”
So we can be in the “I am OK” while watching the “Everything is not OK” play out inside of us.
Could I get sick and die? It’s possible. Could someone I know get sick and die? Also possible.
This isn’t about reassurance that everything will be OK, it’s more about facing our fears from a place of presence and observation.
Then we can see that our fear does not constitute the entirety of who we are. Rather, it is just a part of us that can be observed and does not have to dictate our actions.
3. We can get to know our fear in our body and our minds.
Hello fear! How are you today?
Fear: Rawwrrrr the entire world is going to end and everyone is going to die!
Wow, yeah that sounds scary! What do you need to feel safe?
Fear: Rawrrr, ooo yeah, just to feel heard and understood…Thanks for listening.
What an opportunity to look inward and get to know how our biological fear system works right now.
We can notice where the fear shows up in our body, we can notice the fear-thoughts that show up in our mind, and can bring compassionate curiosity to our entire experience.
We can honor our evolutionary history and our survival system – without fear we would not be here today.
Chances are this isn’t the first time, or the last time that our fear-response is activated. What an opportunity to get to know this part of us better!
Try having a dialogue with your fear and see what happens.
4. We can learn to truly value our health and wellbeing.
There is a big difference between taking action from a place of fear versus a place of love. Next time you are washing your hands try saying: “I’m afraid of getting sick.”
And then the next time you wash your hands try saying: “I value my health.”
How does each one feel?
There isn’t a right or wrong here, the point is to just to notice your underlying intentions.
The coronavirus gives us a unique opportunity to really act from a place of valuing our health and our wellbeing more than ever before (if we so choose).
What happens when we connect with our values and act from that space of loving ourselves and others?
Maybe we do the same actions – cleaning, staying home, eating healthy – but we do them from a place of love rather than fear.
5. It shows us just how interconnected everything really is.
If there’s one thing the coronavirus points us to, it’s that we are all so incredibly interconnected, so much to the point that we are all being forced to disconnect from each other.
It shows us, not just in our cellular connections, but on an emotional, energetic level we are all so connected and influenced by each other.
The way you treat your friends, your co-workers, and yourself creates a ripple effect across the entire planet, far more than we realize sometimes.
The most contagious thing of all in this situation seems to have been the emotional response of fear – and you don’t even need to be physically close to anyone for that to spread like wildfire.
I have nothing against fear – it has served us, and will continue to serve us in our survival and evolution of the planet.
And it just goes to show you that positive energies of love, compassion, gratitude – those too can have a huge impact on our planet; even just a small gesture to someone close to you can spread all across the entire planet.
My hope is that we all can grow and evolve as a result of this global event and use it as a means of expanding our consciousness, getting to know our fear better, and living more from a place of presence and love.
Until next time,
Ellis Edmunds, Psy.D.