Week 4: Strength in the Unknown
It feels like every couple of months (and sometimes weeks) we are jumping into something new. Globally we are in a state of flux like never before. Yet we keep scanning the horizon for an endpoint instead of accepting the way things are. As we continue to ride the pandemic roller coaster, political coaster, general amusement park of horrors — learning to cope with our unpredictable world is not only possible, but also necessary.
Learning how to accept change and unpredictability requires us to relinquish our hold on certainty and control — a significant perspective shift that may feel easier to navigate with mindfulness in tow. With the right techniques in practice, change may begin to feel less overwhelming and more like a welcome part of life.
Here are a few ways to start:
During this uncertainty, it’s normal to feel anxious and overwhelmed at times. Mindfulness is a proven method to help people better manage difficult emotions as they come up and lower anxiety and worry.
By becoming more aware of how anxiety or worry appears in our thoughts and bodily sensations, we can observe them and accept that these are normal and understandable experiences. Using our breath as an anchor, we can feel connected to the present moment versus worrying about the uncertain future.
Yup, this again. Mindfulness can help you achieve a naturally healthy, restful sleep – especially when it can be impacted by heightened stress during the day.
A ‘good’ night’s sleep has a lot more to do with the quality than the quantity of it, and quality of rest has a lot to do with the quality of mind.
Take Care of You
While it’s normal to get caught up in the news cycle, it’s important to ensure you are taking time to prioritize your own wellbeing. Rather than simply reacting, take moments to pause, take a breath and check-in with yourself: this will help you to be intentional in every interaction and make better decisions from a place of clarity.
Focus on What You Can Control
When the world feels unpredictable, we can create a sense of safety and security by following routines and focusing on the things that we do have some control over.
Take stock of the conversations that raise your anxiety levels. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, try to gracefully change the topic or connect with someone else who can help you reframe things in a more positive way — someone who tends to be grounded and calm.
Scheduling activities will also add structure to your day. You might block off 30 minutes for exercise or an hour to read a book. Or perhaps you meet up with a friend, go for a walk or pick up an old hobby. The crucial part is to make time for it on your calendar.