Beyond Just Coping

Staying healthy in trying times like this can be hard. For me, a daily reframing of this uncontrollable virus situation from threatening and frustrating to an unexpected opportunity for growth has been helpful, and of course, challenging. Actually, this reframing practice can keep me pretty busy as I weave through thoughts and emotions that run the gamut from deep fear to sublime hopefulness.

Yes, I am viewing this all as an intense spiritual challenge. The spiritual practice begins with valuing acceptance over control and is one of going inward to connect with the energy and wisdom of your essence, or soul. Becoming aware of what is spirit and what is personality is the fundamental task of this path. To do that work of deep discernment requires a radical slow down, intentional mindfulness, and, most certainly, a bold tenacity. A slow down is necessary because when we are over-busy, as many of us are in normal daily life, it’s difficult to get out from under the reactiveness and habits of the personality and to even remember that you have a true Self. This true Self is eager to be listened to and it is always there but its esoteric voice might rarely be heard in the din of busy. Mindfulness, which is intentionally being both aware and accepting of whatever is happening, heals, encourages, and can essentially guide you along the path. And tenacity is a must as this road inward will be confrontative. I think its fair to say that we have all been confronted by the uncomfortable changes imposed on us by the new rules of social isolation. What has been most difficult for you? What has been most surprising?

Here are six ways to help you embrace as much of this slow down as you can in the service of making a deeper connection with your true Self.

  1. Reframe. Consider this forced slow down as a once in a lifetime chance to get to know your Self better.
  1. Value just Being. I try to keep in mind my yoga mentor Maryann Parker’s sage teaching of, “how you are is as important as what you do”.
  1. Strengthen your mind with Affirmations. We are, arguably, what we think about all day. Affirmations work by challenging the validity of negative thoughts. So, when I remember to, I say mine during 20 second-hand washes. My Basic 5 affirmations are: I love myself, I am worthy, I release all judgments, I forgive myself and others, and I’m filled with gratitude.
  1. Enjoy nature. Exercise to break a sweat and take long, slow walks outdoors. Time in nature brings you into the present moment, de-stresses and relaxes you, and enhances your immune system.
  1. Connect with others. There is nothing as healing as a genuine human connection. So reach out and enjoy conversations that need not be rushed. Make it a point to smile at and thank anybody that you interact with. And don’t forget to call your single friends! Those acts of kindness will boost both your and their immune systems.
  1. Do whatever the hell you want. Read all afternoon, binge watch shows without guilt, take long walks, have complete phone conversations, or do absolutely nothing. What did you wish you had more time for when you were over-busy? What pastimes or new endeavors are calling you?

This is a crisis that is also an opportunity. The conscious habits that you build during this slow downtime will serve you when more normal times return and during any future challenges.

Namaste

Shannon 


Virtual Personal and Small Group Training, and Coaching

I have embraced both personal training and coaching via Zoom and FaceTime. Sessions are working out- pun intended- better than I had thought possible. Small group training is an economical way to experience personal training. So find a friend or 2, or 3 and get professional training at an affordable price.

We apologize if last month’s blog was more confusing than informative.

Here is a reformatted version of 10 Weight Loss Strategies That REALLY Work: Part 1

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