Putting Out the Welcome Mat for 2021?
Welcome, Everyone, to 2021. Just over one week ago we were kissing 2020 good-bye, mostly in a fairly quiet way. While fireworks went off, even in Australia where there was hope that they nearly eliminated community transmission of the Coronavirus, there were no large crowds. Champagne sales were down this year by more than 20% and, compared to previous years, there weren't many kisses exchanged at midnight. January 1 left a lot of people relieved not to test "positive", yet not really able to muster up much excitement for a year that feels like it could be "more of the same". So even though we know that there's nothing actually magical about the transition from the last day of a year into the first day of the next year, there's often excitement and anticipation for what might come.
This year we've had to dig deep for enthusiasm. The last nine months have challenged us in so many ways, yet it hasn't been all bad. There are many sayings and thoughts about the idea of complacency leading to mediocrity. We certainly haven't had a chance to get complacent in 2020. Keeping ourselves on alert and needing to adapt is what keeps us evolving and feeling truly alive. Health professionals tell us that when we are interactive and involved, we weather the aging process far better. When the pandemic first hit, I was in a pleasant household with two other people. I still went to work because I'm a nurse and I had a hospital contract. It was spring into summer and the weather was delightful. I made sure to go for a long walk every day, mixing up the routes and areas I explored. I wasn't totally thrilled with the general health situation, but I was able to make the best of it by taking care of myself.
My annual cross-country road trip was different in some ways, however I figured out how to make it work and it ended up being another wonderful adventure. At first, I continued with my feelings of well-being, in spite of the situation, once I landed at my destination in rural, S Oregon. I was catching up with friends and family and the weather was lovely. As fall turned into winter, though, I've had to up my game to stay optimistic. Which leads to this week's Monday Quote ... I've noticed that,
"If you really want something, don't bring it up when you're feeling low energy and can't see the possibility. Wait until you're feeling really good about something and then, tag your desire onto that from a high energy point of attraction."
It's hard to feel hopeful and dwell in possibility, as Emily Dickinson wrote, when we are also feeling down in the dumps. This might seem obvious, but how often do we find ourselves complaining about what we can't do when we're feeling flat or worse, yet we could bring up the same topic at a later date and be filled with promise of potential. Here's an example: Let's say that you've been considering taking a course that might give you the opportunity to do something different, something you feel would be more interesting than your current job. If you've been indoors for several days, watching CNN, eating junk food, and you haven't seen, much less spoken to another human being, you probably won't be very excited about the prospect of a year in a Program. You'll consider how loooong a year seems and how you didn't really like school all that much and who do you think you are to be trying to improve your life. On the other hand, if you've made the effort to get outside at least once a day, you've committed to having healthy snacks around, and you've been working out to dance videos and face-timing with friends, you could feel very differently. You might think, "It's only a year and we all know a year goes by quickly", plus you liked school when it was something interesting and that's why you've chosen this Course, and why the heck shouldn't you uplevel?!? Who would you rather hang out with ... the complacent, this-is-how-it-is, gloomy version of you or the positive-thinking, healthy-habit-practicing you? I think we know the answer to that. I was recently reminded of something I learned a long time ago when I first started meditating: our brain is our slave, not our master. Figure out, through connection with others, what nourishes your ability to "rewire" to achieve calmness, centredness, and clarity -- this is what I wish for you.
For some time now, I have posted a Monday Quote every other week followed up by further discussion in my Thursday Blogette in that same week. Sometimes I write the follow-up on Monday or Tuesday. Other times I create a little anxiety and drive my amazing assistant crazy by not getting it out until late Wednesday. This week I left it until Wednesday and then, I was so filled with sadness and even some despair, I couldn't write at all. A dear friend said, "The morning turned into mourning", (thank you, Fran). Even now, as I write, I'm not sure how this will eventually all turn out here in the United States. For now, it appears that we are working hard to rise above so much misguidance and misunderstanding. What I do know is that the more I sit and watch the news and read Tweets and discuss how awful this is, the less I will be able to contribute something, anything positive. I am grateful to have meditation and to be able to make lists of that for which I am grateful and to be healthy and able to contribute in a helpful, hopeful way. Please, I encourage you to reach out to each other and make a pact to do whatever it takes, to overcome negativity and lift ourselves into higher, forward-looking, more optimistic energy. I am holding space for you with Sparkles and Love.
I have learned, at times the "hard" way, that we only have control over our own thoughts and behaviors and no one else's. What's interesting and what helps me trust the process is when I take care of myself and improve my quality of life, I am able to create a ripple effect, sometimes small, sometimes big, but always for the better. I recently became a coach for a Program that addresses the support of happy, healthy habits. Weight is often a significant "symptom" of many areas in our lives that need our care and attention and I address this. I personally lost 25 pounds and feel better than ever. However, it's just a scratch on the surface. If you'd like to know more, I would be thrilled to have a chat with you. Send me a message and we'll set you up!
Sparkles and Love,