So how are you doing? I am asking the question because in the light of the recent events in Ukraine I have experienced some strong feelings related to the war. I noticed when I watched the news and saw bombings of buildings I felt the pain of innocent lives needlessly lost. With every image I see, it hurts my heart. I am reminded of a line John Coffey in “The Green Mile” shared with Paul Edgecombe when discussing his execution. When explaining that he was ready to die he said this.
“Mostly, I’m tired of people being ugly to each other. I’m tired of all the pain I feel and hear in the world every day. There’s too much of it. It’s like pieces of glass in my head, all the time…”
So why am I sharing this with you? I get it. I know some of you may be feeling the same way with no way to express and release. Some of us may be feeling helpless and hopeless. Others of us are asking our selves “What Can I do?”
I have a very simple answer. Take Care of You! No really! Love yourself. Radical self-care is the very best thing you can do when you experience this. This is why I am so grateful for my self-care practices that support me during difficult times such as these. What did I do when I found myself experiencing these emotions? I allowed myself to feel my feelings. I leaned into my self-care practices. I upped my meditation game. I played music and mantras that lift me up and allow me to connect to love. I reached out to my support system and by leaned into my feelings with curiosity. One of my friends, Grace Terry, reminded me there is in every moment more love in the world than hate. I am grateful for friends that remind me to connect to love. I am reminded of a quote by John Lennon.
“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance.”
When I think about there being more love in the world than hate, I know it is important that I do my part by leading with love. It is difficult I know. You want to support those being hurt with compassion and that can so easily turn to fear. It is important that we keep the balance with love to prevent the fear from rising. You know what we feed grows. Let’s feed the love. Why love yourself? Because you deserve it. There is no one that deserves your love more than you.
Here are a few suggestions of how you can love yourself through difficult times:
- Feel your feelings. The most loving thing you can do is to allow yourself to feel your feelings without trying to change them. If you feel sad, feel sad. Give yourself the space to feel what you are feeling with curiosity and non-judgement.
- Reach out to your support system. You may need to start by identifying people in your life you can count on for support.
- Be aware of your needs and say “yes” to getting them met.
- Accept and celebrate “you”. All of you, with love.
- Give your body the rest it needs. The more you stress your body and mind, the less you are able to respond with love.
Support yourself with your self-care practices:
- Think about increasing your meditation practice.
- Make time for physical activity
- Share time with people you love and that love you. People whose mere presence lifts you up.
- Do what supports you in self-care. You know what supports you better than anyone.
As we love ourselves, we can be assured we are holding up the love quotient of the planet. That is how you help. Love yourself.
Much love and light to you and yours!