With all the news, losses, and chaos of the unknown every day, we were talking about what is helping us day by day, during Covid.
Cooking, music, gardening, bird songs from the window, night sky, Face Time, reading, painting, hiking, swimming, sharing, webinars, long walks, golf, road trip, are some of the ideas, but what was missing was the NO MATTER WHAT I CAN FIND A PRACTICE TO RE-CENTER.
What practice you do may work one day, but NOT the next. This is natural. We rise and collapse or we just feel flat. We are not use to ORDINARY days for such a long time. We spin trying to plan ahead, and that gets exhausting because of cancelling or still not knowing what Fall and Winter will be. We are learning. We are frustrated. We are sick of it. Still, we are here. Thank goodness!
Bottom line, we need to build an inner world of relaxation, which has been one of my favorite things to do for decades. Even before I was critically ill when my healthy child was 18 months, I was on the journey of practicing a connection within myself, quieting the outer, dropping deeper and building inner sacred space. Thank goodness I did that work with the help of amazing teachers and friends. Still I have days I cannot settle myself, I am continually practicing, and over the years have added a visual place in my home that I change and that reminds me what truly matters or what I need now for support.
I am writing you today to suggest your finding a way to build SAFETY within yourself. You don’t need an hour. You don’t need pure quiet because the mind wonders, distracts, and you will come back to center. Like the ocean, you wave, in and out. Hopefully, you connect with feelings and allow them to communicate with you. Oh, how your mind will try and take you away. Return to center, breathing back to noticing feelings and how your body is doing. Then ask, “What do you want me to see and or what would you like to say to me right now?” You can ask 3 times pausing each time for a sensation, an image, words. Sometimes you will think nothing is happening here. Keep going. Try another time that day. Maybe try music playing. This is an exploration. Who doesn’t have wants? I want to hear something or see something, feel something, now. You can ask for it that way, too. Hopefully your inner critic doesn’t keep you away from building your inner sacred space that is just for you.
Practice. It is actually fun. I keep paper and pencil to doodle or note what I heard or felt. There are many practices from within. I am happy to share with you. This has been fun and frustrating for sure for over 30 years.
We want to belong. We want to have community. We want to have choices of how to get to peace, even for ten minutes. We long for a meaningful life, not just filling time, no matter what is happening in our world. Remember, it is natural that what worked one-day may not work the next. Begin!
Take good care,
Natalie Caine, M.A. firstname.lastname@example.org