The Long Term Strategy
“The core definition of asana , Sthira Sukham Asanam, is not about flexibility, it means to be steadfast, to be strong, to find that part of yourself that is unshakable.”
I’ve had awhile now of continued reflection upon on the impacts (individually and collectively), of COVID-19. It is by far one of the greatest challenges we have universally faced. One aspect that I think has particularly been the most difficult for most of us, is the unknown timeline.
No one knows when infections will stop or for how long we will have to implement various strategies for public health. It is difficult to implement a strategy for coping when the timeline is unknown, and it is inevitable that we will be met with fatigue along the way.
For me, I have noticed an increase in metal fatigue. It’s a lot to juggle small children at home, their schooling and needs, along with my own, and the worry of the studio and supporting my family. There is way too much information constantly coming (much of it conflicting) along with various expressions of collective swings of energy – fear, anger, distrust, and so on. We are all witnessing suffering and enduring our own, and that alone can cause one to grow weary. Each of us are having to make our own decisions of what feels right for ourselves, families, and communities, while also paying attention to guidelines set forth by government officials. Also, remember that when there is an increase in mental energy, it can deplete our physical energy. So by Living our Yoga, we can evaluate these fluctuations a little more clearly. The ability to Live our Yoga is putting into practice being present and to keep coming back to the present when we wander away. Being in the present offers opportunity for fresh perspectives and not drawing upon old habits.
So my first reminder (that I have said before), is to please be kind. First and foremost, be kind to yourself. And then, extend that same kindness to others. The only way to do this, is to stay vigilant in your own self care. Pay attention to your emotions, your thoughts, and your body so that you can support what you are needing on any given day.
We are navigating through uncharted waters. We have not been trained in how to respond to this level of crisis, but we can notice what comes up for us and then make choices on what to do. You have all the wisdom you need to be your own first responder – the first step is the willingness to accept and follow your own prescription.
What has been most helpful for me is to notice when I feel fatigued and rest. Rest physically yes, but even more so to rest my mind. This means at times having the TV and phone off, delaying the return of emails, letting go of chores, and getting outside. I’m listening to the increased craving of silence and stillness and I find such a reprieve with deep breaths of fresh air. Just last weekend we piled the kids in the car along with pizza, to find a quite place in Big Sur and watch the sunset. It was both beautiful and magical. There was a moment, while overlooking the vast ocean as the glowing sun was setting, my kids running with joy and laughter, that all felt right in the world. A moment where I realized I was still free, and connected to something so great and beyond myself. A moment where I could rest and find peace.
We all need these moments, and my wish is that you are able to create them for yourself.
With love and light,
Laura McKinnonCategories: Yoga & Mindfulness Blog