trauma

Heart-Care for the Time of Coronavirus

Dear all,

This time we are living in – is a lot.

I know many folks are scared, panicked, and anxious. Still others are in shock or disbelief. Others may feel angry and frustrated, or deep grief. No matter what you feel, it is welcome. There is no one right way to feel about what we are all experiencing in the world right now.

It is my intention to offer some ways to move through these times with as much love, care, and support as possible. Please read the tips below, and see what resonates for you. As always – take what feels right, and leave the rest.

  • Trust your inner guidance. This is the part of you that feels wise, ancient, untouched by time. You may experience this as your intuition, your heart, your soul or spirit, your guide, your conscience, or some other name that feels right to you. See if you can take a moment and connect with that throughout the day. Ask for what would be supportive for you. Then trust yourself.
  • Trust your body. If your body is saying you need rest, that you need to stretch, that you need to go outside and feel your feet on the rich earth – do so. Your body can guide you.
  • Practice mindfulness. Perhaps you meditate through traditional meditation practices, or through mindful walks in nature, through slow and thoughtful journaling, or drawing. Take a moment to look around you – notice the details of where you are and what you see, as if a poet describing the scene. Notice the smells, colors, and textures. This can bring your presence back into your body – and your presence can be healing to your anxieties.
  • Express yourself! Find a way to move your feelings out through expression. This might look like: a free write (where you write for 5 minutes or 3 pages without needing to make sense), dancing wildly to your favorite songs, drawing your feelings on paper. The goal is not the final product – it is to use the arts as a tool for healing. No skills necessary!
  • Get creative. Perhaps you’ve been wanting to write poetry, learn to play a new song, cook a new recipe, take an online class – now is your chance! Write, draw, sing, dance, paint, take a free course, cook, garden, etc. Try something new and different. This can be a wonderful distraction during times of high stress, and can signal to your body that you can relax more.
  • Stay connected with loved ones and friends. Make sure to stay connected. We are social beings – we need and crave relationship (whether an introvert or an extrovert!). If you cannot connect in person – connect through group video chats, phone calls, text messages, emails, handwritten letters. You can cook brunch together over video, or even skype while watching a video together.
  • Laugh. Truly, it is healing for the body. Read awful jokes. Learn to pun. Watch silly and ridiculous movies. Use irreverent humor. Humor is a powerful and fun ally!
  • Find movement practices that suit you. YouTube yoga teacher Adriene (“Yoga with Adriene”) has loads of free yoga videos, and a sweet dog who sleeps through them with her as she practices. I highly recommend her channel. There are also lots of other channels that have videos for pilates, dance, stretching, etc. Try them out and see what you enjoy! When you can – take a walk, go for a run, or simply sit and stretch outside.
  • Get outside! If you can get to a park, go for a gentle hike. Sit by a tree. Draw. Breathe. Take in the healing of fresh air and the sun. Let the rains cleanse you. Take in your surroundings. Nature is here with you. She’s been through so much – and she is still here. Nature is a great healer and teacher for us all.
  • Read. Watch movies. Listen to music and podcasts. If you can’t get to a library to get some of these, many public libraries have extensive online options.
  • Connect to your spirit and soul beliefs. Find the language and practices that work for you. There is an energetic impact to everything, and that is especially present right now. The more you can find your own center, sense of self, experience of love, nourishment, and connection during this time – the less this energy can affect you.
  • Lastly, and very importantly – practice setting firm limits around the news. Really limit your exposure to the news – perhaps choose one or two trusted sites to check daily. It is so tempting, and part of the energy of this time, to scroll endlessly and get lost in updates. Remember: This is a trauma response. The more you can set gentle but firm boundaries with yourself, the more you can give your whole self (body, mind, heart, energy/spirit/soul) the message that even though this is a lot, you are still loved and cared for. This will go a very long way in taking care of yourself during this time.

Sending much breath, grounding, and heart connection to us all.

In Healing,

Phoenix

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