As the Coronavirus outbreak began, people were in two camps: those with intense fear, and those in denial. Although this is a time for level-headed thinking and planning, the “denial response” may speak to what’s actually fueling the panic: a direct threat to our sense of safety and security! And…..this can’t be overlooked.
Yes, this novel virus is more virulent and deadly than any we’ve experienced in our lifetime
But we fool ourselves if we focus solely on the virulence of the virus; the potential to get sick and die, the fear of losing loved ones, or even the economic impact. Yes, those are scary and legitimate concerns. But they indicate a much bigger issue: Our healthcare system may fail us just when we need it the most. And this shakes us to our core.
It seems that, never in our lifetimes, have our systems—medical and other—been so totally unprepared for what we’re facing. Some of our medical systems are so stressed that they can no longer guarantee the kind of medical care we expect. Because we haven’t had economic stops in place, we feel as though we’ve careened into desperate financial times. The things we thought we'd always have are gone…….and we don’t know what the future holds.
t’s understandable that this feels like a direct threat to our ability to survive. In just thinking of some of the phrases we’ve heard lately, like forecasting unprecedented deaths, greater than the great depression, changing our country in ways we can’t fathom, we can understand why thoughts of this nature set off our fight-or-flight mechanism.
We’re anxious about the unknown and want to “take up arms” to fight the enemy—just when we’re stuck at home and feeling powerless!
There are many things you can do to improve your sense of safety and security and to take back some of your power, though. Here are a few thoughts:
- What’s feeding your sense of insecurity and lack of safety? Are you glued to the TV or scouring the internet for death projections? While it’s important to stay informed, some sources are more hyperbole and conjecture than facts and information. This may feed feelings of anxiety and helplessness.
- If you’re worried about never getting backto normal (whatever that means), accept that going back isn’t possible. We never go back! We should always move forward until we achieve a new, desirable normal. It’s not the optimist who thinks "This too shall pass." It’s the realist. Everything passes, even the happiest times we wish would last forever. As we transition to different times, it’s important to be flexible, patient, and to look for what we can learn from this experience, so we can make our future better than our past.
- Establish a new daily routine. If this is the first time you’ve worked from home, you may be tempted to work in pajamas all day. If you’re not working, you may want to binge watch TV instead of doing something productive. This is fine and even needed from time to time. But you need structure to create a sense of normal, so create a daily routine for when you wake and sleep, eat, exercise, and work at something productive (if you aren’t actually working now). This will help you move to your new normal.
Take care of your first chakra— the root chakra. Our first chakra speaks to our sense of safety and security as well as our place in the world. It is rooted in our connections to our community, family, and other support systems—even institutional ones. The health of our immune system is part of the first chakra, so shore it up through grounding, daily prayer or meditation, taking nutritional supplements to support health and immunity, exercise, eating healthfully, and sleeping solidly.
These are sad, scary times.
And.....it’s ok to admit it.
But when we address the root cause of what’s contributing to our unease, it will lessen!
Which of the tips will you implement today? How can you shore up your first chakra during uncertain times?
Please share how you're doing!