Covid-19 seems to stop the world for a while. Who has time to contemplate on Love and Respect when the world is upside down?
Shouldn´t you better recalculate your pension plan, work on worse-case and worst-case scenarios?
What could be a tangible benefit in spending time contemplating on Love and Respect?
Hardly anybody would have believed that this was possible: the world economy is paused, the world is locked down. Many people are in fear of losing “everything” that they thought was theirs. Our health and wellbeing is at risk, not only due to the virus, but also due to fears, social distancing, lack of physical activity and lack of daylight leading to depression. Freedom is a value to be redefined. While sitting at home, locked-down in your 4 walls, you can get claustrophobic. Especially if you think about how much longer this will go…
If you are usually running in the “I-need-to-fix-this-NOW” mode, Love and Respect might feel a rather luxurious, everything other than prioritized topic to you, especially under current circumstances. I understand, when fear drives your thoughts, it is the most natural thing to focus on problem-solving and not in solution-thinking.
What could be a good argument to convince our ego-driven minds to let go of problem thinking and focus on values such as Love and Respect? Ego-driven, meaning our natural tendency to protect ourselves from damage. What would be the alternative to ego-driven and still being safe?
The truth is, what we thought was safe and sound is not as secure as we believed. Or would you have believed that the world would “shut down” for months some time ago? Our idea of security is still an idea. There is not such a thing as total security. We can calculate and provide statistics and argue for whatever we want to argue. And we can change the value of a “fact” by changing its relationship to other factors.
A tangible benefit is concrete, tactile or at least sensible, would you agree?
If you are somewhat limited in your free choices, forced to do things differently than usual, then, you might feel somewhat more irritated, angry, fearful or sad. Such situations produce certain feelings which come with sensible consequences in the body. Would you agree, that quality of life is notably affected by such sensations? Well, this could be an argument, why using the time to contemplate on Love and Respect is NOW: simply because you may free yourself from illusionary ideas that restrict your health and wellbeing and get back to one topic that even during COVID-19 times is interesting: Enjoy life despite fear, anxiety, sadness or limitations.
This is not about manipulating your mind to think positively about something that bothers you as if you were supposed to like what you dislike. We enter a completely different domain: beyond likes and dislikes. Fact is, that we are restricted now and we cannot control the situation ourselves. We even don’t really know what is the right thing to do – we just assume that latest research and decisions taken by politicians are what we have to do now. Knowledge changes everyday, once we research new aspects, old statistics become irrelevant. So let’s be real: Here and now is all we can influence and we can only change ourselves. Almost everybody at some point in their lives got to understand that intellectually. And still, we act as if we forgot, trapped in the “fix-it-NOW” mode.
So the Love and Respect strategy is not that dumb after all, even or especially if you are used to auto-react to situations.
The other day I was on a Zoom-Call with “Possibility Managers” (please google https://possibilitymanagement.org/ for more information).
People from around the globe gathered in order to learn, explore and experiment new possibilities together.
At one point we were asked to do an experiment: take a deep breath and look at one of the people in the chat window during half a minute or so. Once the mind calmed down to a state of non-judgement, (e.g. about the look of the person), a warm feeling around the heart occurred in most of the participants. We felt a sense of connection, appreciation, respect and love. We felt right here right now is the best place to be in order to live this precious moment of truly connecting and feeling that energy in the body.
Love is just a word, said the brain-worker, and still that indescribable feeling in every cell is nothing one can deny, unless you keep distracting yourself from calming down and feeling whatever you feel. And that is the tricky point: it might feel “uncomfortable” once you get quiet. The fear of feeling anxiety, sadness or serious fear kept us in the mouse-wheel too long. Now is the change to dare to face what is. Once we allow ourselves to accept any feeling in a non-judgemental way, we allow the flow of energy running through our body, without judging into good and bad. Then, real change can occur, because we no longer need to run away, fight or freeze, but free this intrinsic energy to use it mindfully instead of suppressing it.
What if anger was an incredible tool to set boundaries, so collect enough energy to finally change a longterm habit, to become clear about what you really want and what you no longer want to allow? I suggest to allow the energy to flow freely and still RESPOND mindfully to a situation. How that works? That’s food for another blogpost. (Shoot me an email and we can talk on whatsapp!)
What if sadness was a valuable testimony that reminds you that you care about a relationship?
What if you were open to become curious about the possibility of using fear a the source of creativity it can be? If you dared to feel the sensations to their full extend and realize the impact it has in the body without fighting it? Woohoo – so much energy.
Imagine you used your extra time at home to explore these sensations, trusting, that you won’t die. What is your instant reaction? Curiosity, appetite, aversion or shutting down? Imagine you would no longer be afraid of “negative” feelings but open to feel what you feel. Your unconscious habit would no longer focus on distracting, suppressing or fighting those feelings, but on love and respect towards yourself and the people around you.
If you start with including a little calm-your-mind habit such as a daily 5-10 minute meditation, chances are that you will notice a difference after 2 or 3 weeks of investing those daily 5-10 minutes. Imagine you could switch from Monkey Mindº to consciously being here and now with a calm mind and experience inner peace. Yes, nothing will change in the physical world, unless a type of action. And yes, the action of meditating with the goal of training to be calm and focused is a prerequisite to respond consciously to situations instead of auto-reacting with unconscious patterns from the past. Worth an investment?
There are loads of free guided meditations online available as well as phone apps to experiment with. At Chopracentermeditation.com you find a short and simple daily meditation guided by Oprah und Deepak Chopra.
Strategy Love and Respect starts with yourself: if you make your inner world priority by respectfully caring about what you really feel and switch from judging to unconditionally accepting it, that is a loving attitude towards yourself. Imagine how it would feel to totally love and accept yourself, no matter how you feel in the very moment! Imagine you could experiment this with others as well. What would change?
Maybe the way you live the very moment would change.
Maybe the outlook on life would change.
Maybe the level of energy that runs through your system would change.
Maybe your impact on the world would change. Not by manipulating, simply by vibrating differently.
º MONKEY MIND Mental Hygiene for more Joy every Day now available in English directly from the Author. (German Edition e.g. at Amazon)
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