Trying to Stay in the Zone of Mindfulness and Relaxation while Faced with Decisions

MC Fairy doing a yoga pose with a flower behind her.

This week’s theme was staying grounded in the face of decisions and new waves of unsettling information. My mind has been restless. As a result, this week sleep has not been as restful, as I have been waking up through the night and struggling to return to sleep even practicing mindfulness. So, given my rather flighty fairy brain right now, this blog is organized into two categories, observations and coping strategies.

Observations

Relief from Procrastination:

Over September and October and half of November, I have sensed that people were hanging on to the summer and the positive low numbers, procrastinating on enforcing tighter mask wear measures and physical distancing. In our condo building, we have all been rather casual on masking in public areas, engaging in the practice sporadically. Generally, in our community people have been cautious gathering in small bubble groups outside but then CoVid fatigue and the need for socialization kicks in and people start to wade in to crossing the physical distancing boundary, (add a bit of booze and all inhibitions go out the window). Now with new measures we have a defined expectation that everyone wears masks in all common areas of the building.

Personally, I find this a relief. It has put us on the same page of intent. It takes the decision making out of our own heads and is setting the expectation that now is not the time for individual expression but to be part of the team.

Discernment and Compassion:

More than ever, we are all confronted with new historical situations. In addition, our minds are reeling with out of the norm perceptional reflections. We are faced with:

  • Grieving
  • Stressful economics
  • Isolation
  • New ways of learning to use technology to communicate (particularly stressful for the population most at risk for infection, and are most likely isolated given their lifestyles and aging bodies)
  • Peer pressure (I’ll reflect more on this in weeks to come) 
  • Risk taking (when new opportunities present themselves during a pandemic do you forge ahead or retreat in fear?)
  • Intensity with those in our personal bubbles
  • Circumstances that are provoking mental health issues
  • Maintaining friendships
  • Keeping physically healthy
  • Maintaining one’s healthy personal boundaries
  • …I could keep going…

In an earlier blog I relayed the story of how I had a discussion with a friend who was a former boss, that evolved into a light debate on the question: What is more important discernment or compassion? Looking at today’s pandemic, we are all constantly being faced with a myriad of minute decisions that are requiring us to ask whether an action is safe? Does it enhance our security (CoVid verses economics)?

Bottom line, we have to stay balanced, mindful of the needs and safety of the common good while ‘putting the mask on ourselves first’ recognizing when the priority is self-love (not selfishness). CoVid, although is insidious and covert, ultimately rests on the black and white theme of diagnosis/illness versus not. Mental health, however, tends to be even more hidden, confusing and is proving to affect mortality rates (addiction and suicide). Mental health issues are far easier to hide with a smile or light and trivial communication. We don’t know what lies within the confines of anyone’s mind. We need to be respectful and show compassion when evaluating and comparing ourselves to others. This is such a huge topic, and contentious, but maybe if we all try to hold empathy and love at the forefront (restraining our need to feed our egos of being right) while quietly listening and observing, maybe just maybe we might hit common cooperative ground?

Coping Strategies

Stress Relief and Serenity:

This week, at times, it has felt like I’m at a carnival game trying to bop the crazy popping gophers! Information whirling in my head and the environment like a blender. In Al-Anon we talk about not giving our serenity away. One of the novena’s that I pray to St Pier Giorgio includes the following:

Pier Giorgio responds: “I offer you my best wishes- or rather, only one wish that a true friend can express for a dear friend: may the peace of the Lord be with you always! For, if you possess peace every day, you will be truly rich.” https://frassatiusa.org/seventh-day

Peace and serenity are the keys to staying grounded. Everyone has what works for them. Here are a few methods I find helpful. Please feel free to share your methods. The more we all share, the more resources we all will have to cope.

  • Gratitude journal
  • Daily prayer at designated times and throughout the day
  • Fitness
  • Creative projects – knitting and crochet, sketching, writing, video and blogging projects
  • Jazz music
  • Home yoga with Adriene
  • Calls with friends
  • Reading
  • Cleaning – yes, I know sounds strange, but cleaning and tidying can be one of the best ways to clear the mind
  • Sitting by the fire table
  • Taking a daily shower lol

In conclusion, while weathering this pandemic storm, let’s all stay grounded, putting the mask on ourselves first, then support each other with compassionate discernment. There is a light at the end of the tunnel as the vaccines emerge. We’ve gotten through ten months! Yipee! We can get through ten more, we’ve got this!

This Week’s Video Links:

MC Fairy resting under a flower

Trying to Stay in the Zone of Mindfulness and Relaxation while Faced with Decisions

This week’s theme was staying grounded in the face of decisions and new waves of unsettling information. My mind has been restless. As a result, this week sleep has not been as restful, as I have been waking up through the night and struggling to return to sleep even practicing mindfulness. So, given my rather flighty fairy brain right now, this blog is organized into two categories, observations and coping strategies.

Observations

Relief from Procrastination:

Over September and October and half of November, I have sensed that people were hanging on to the summer and the positive low numbers, procrastinating on enforcing tighter mask wear measures and physical distancing. In our condo building, we have all been rather casual on masking in public areas, engaging in the practice sporadically. Generally, in our community people have been cautious gathering in small bubble groups outside but then CoVid fatigue and the need for socialization kicks in and people start to wade in to crossing the physical distancing boundary, (add a bit of booze and all inhibitions go out the window). Now with new measures we have a defined expectation that everyone wears masks in all common areas of the building.

Personally, I find this a relief. It has put us on the same page of intent. It takes the decision making out of our own heads and is setting the expectation that now is not the time for individual expression but to be part of the team.

Discernment and Compassion:

More than ever, we are all confronted with new historical situations. In addition, our minds are reeling with out of the norm perceptional reflections. We are faced with:

  • Grieving
  • Stressful economics
  • Isolation
  • New ways of learning to use technology to communicate (particularly stressful for the population most at risk for infection, and are most likely isolated given their lifestyles and aging bodies)
  • Peer pressure (I’ll reflect more on this in weeks to come) 
  • Risk taking (when new opportunities present themselves during a pandemic do you forge ahead or retreat in fear?)
  • Intensity with those in our personal bubbles
  • Circumstances that are provoking mental health issues
  • Maintaining friendships
  • Keeping physically healthy
  • Maintaining one’s healthy personal boundaries
  • …I could keep going…

In an earlier blog I relayed the story of how I had a discussion with a friend who was a former boss, that evolved into a light debate on the question: What is more important discernment or compassion? Looking at today’s pandemic, we are all constantly being faced with a myriad of minute decisions that are requiring us to ask whether an action is safe? Does it enhance our security (CoVid verses economics)?

MC Fairy doing a yoga pose with a flower behind her.
MC Fairy resting under a flower
MC Fairy's face on top of a tree

Bottom line, we have to stay balanced, mindful of the needs and safety of the common good while ‘putting the mask on ourselves first’ recognizing when the priority is self-love (not selfishness). CoVid, although is insidious and covert, ultimately rests on the black and white theme of diagnosis/illness versus not. Mental health, however, tends to be even more hidden, confusing and is proving to affect mortality rates (addiction and suicide). Mental health issues are far easier to hide with a smile or light and trivial communication. We don’t know what lies within the confines of anyone’s mind. We need to be respectful and show compassion when evaluating and comparing ourselves to others. This is such a huge topic, and contentious, but maybe if we all try to hold empathy and love at the forefront (restraining our need to feed our egos of being right) while quietly listening and observing, maybe just maybe we might hit common cooperative ground?

Coping Strategies

Stress Relief and Serenity:

This week, at times, it has felt like I’m at a carnival game trying to bop the crazy popping gophers! Information whirling in my head and the environment like a blender. In Al-Anon we talk about not giving our serenity away. One of the novena’s that I pray to St Pier Giorgio includes the following:

Pier Giorgio responds: “I offer you my best wishes- or rather, only one wish that a true friend can express for a dear friend: may the peace of the Lord be with you always! For, if you possess peace every day, you will be truly rich.” https://frassatiusa.org/seventh-day

Peace and serenity are the keys to staying grounded. Everyone has what works for them. Here are a few methods I find helpful. Please feel free to share your methods. The more we all share, the more resources we all will have to cope.

  • Gratitude journal
  • Daily prayer at designated times and throughout the day
  • Fitness
  • Creative projects – knitting and crochet, sketching, writing, video and blogging projects
  • Jazz music
  • Home yoga with Adriene
  • Calls with friends
  • Reading
  • Cleaning – yes, I know sounds strange, but cleaning and tidying can be one of the best ways to clear the mind
  • Sitting by the fire table
  • Taking a daily shower lol

In conclusion, while weathering this pandemic storm, let’s all stay grounded, putting the mask on ourselves first, then support each other with compassionate discernment. There is a light at the end of the tunnel as the vaccines emerge. We’ve gotten through ten months! Yipee! We can get through ten more, we’ve got this!

This Week’s Video Links: