It IS Possible to Find Peace Amidst the Chaos
It is not a denial of our current situation or an attempt to shield ourselves from the suffering of the world. It is the realization that both disease and beauty can exist simultaneously. It is the understanding that love is one of the most powerful forces!
Pause for a moment. Recall a time when your grandmother, cat/dog, or niece/nephew showed you love. If none of these beings resonate with you, think of someone you know loves you unconditionally (but not a romantic love), even if they are no longer with us in their physical form. Recall a memory with them, or imagine what it looks like to have them look at you with pure love in their eyes.
Did you allow yourself to pause? Can you let yourself grow and enrich that experience? Get a clearer image of it existing within you instead of outside of yourself and then notice what part of your body comes online to you with this memory. Observe any of the sensations that arise by holding this memory/visualization inside of yourself. Stay with those sensations as long as you can.
If you do not notice any sensations, place one hand on your heart and one on your belly. Can you imagine the youngest version you remember of yourself? Can you observe what it feels like to be held by a much wiser, more mature version of who you were and offer yourself that compassion and love that we all crave?
Love has a soothing expansive physiological response in our body, as I'm sure you just experienced if you allowed yourself to pause and investigate. When faced with the contracting physiological response of fear and sadness, instead of judging ourselves for feeling these emotions, consider looking at those emotions together with the felt experience of love that you were able to cultivate by recalling a memory or visualization of a loved one. We want to begin transitioning our embodied state from one of fear, to compassion, love, and present moment awareness. The moment we feel fear and worry, we are operating mostly from our primitive brain and the pathways to our prefrontal cognitive functions diminish. Our body starts to prepare us for an attack when it senses fear by releasing adrenaline and cortisol into our bloodstream. These are important functions that are very helpful when we are actually in a life threatening scenario or when we need to get out of bed in the morning, but if we are constantly perceiving threats and releasing stress hormones into our system, we are likely to experience more inflammation and dis-ease.
Our ability to think clearly is reduced significantly when we get caught up in fear and we end up with a narrow view of the situation that has us "stuck." Learning to cultivate present moment awareness and compassion allows us to reintegrate our brain and gets us out of our sympathetic nervous system activity that can be detrimental to our health if imbalanced and always being activated.
Next time we catch an image of someone suffering or struggling because of COVID19, instead of shutting down, feeling overwhelmed, or cringing, what if you sent them love? Tune into the expansive vibrations of love. Tuning into the sense of love allows us to tune down our reactive primitive brain and access the higher more evolved functions of our prefrontal cortex, which allow us to respond rationally and make better decisions.
Hope you are all staying safe and looking for the beauty that still exists around us!
Check out my go-to resources below for when I feel stuck.