September 16, 2020
We’re nine months into 2020 at this point, six months into a global pandemic, and hundreds of years into a social and racial pandemic. Whew, that’s a lot to think about!
Well, if you’re like me, it leaves us grasping for proverbial straws, attempting to establish some sort of certainty and control in the midst of the unpredictability inherent within each of these pandemics.
Quite naturally, we can certainly linger in this worry-filled space. At the same time, did you know that chronic stress and strain, as well as associated grief, can have a profound impact on our ability to experience a quality lifestyle? Yep, that’s right.
Managing the weight of everything we’re facing today can impact not only how we feel emotionally, but also our take an incredible toll on our physical bodies and spiritual well-being.
I would argue that the first step in coping with the weight of what confronts us is to name the impact. Name the frustration … the irritation … the spiritual questioning … the physical strain.
Naming the issues reminds us of our humanity and grounds us in the reality that life is messy and complicated. And hard.
But we can’t just stop with naming our problems and frustrations. This, my friend, would be way too easy. And some could argue that if we dwelled here, we’re no different than whiny complainers who simply like to hear their sappy monologues. Yikes!
One powerful practice to help us shift our lifestyle in a more positive direction is intention setting.
What do I mean by that?
Simply put, intention setting involves making a decision to do something in order to obtain something.
I love what Deepak Chopra, a meditation and mindfulness guru, says about setting intentions: “Everything that happens in the universe begins with intention.” (Learn “5 Steps for Setting Powerful Intentions” here: https://chopra.com/articles/5-steps-to-setting-powerful-intentions).
Setting your intention to move your body. Setting your intention to quiet your mind. And yes, setting your intention to ask the hard questions that have loomed endlessly in your thoughts. (No, I’m not in your head. I’m human also and could write an entire book about my own roaming thoughts!)
As simple as it sounds, these are crucial practices to begin walking in the right direction and experiencing a more meaningful lifestyle. When you do, you realize you’re not alone in the suffering all around us. And you can expel some of the emotional, physical, and spiritual energy you’ve used — containing all of the weight — in a way that’s more productive and healthy overall.
Is it in the space of simply avoiding it all? Or stopping at the naming part — aka, complaining?
If so, I challenge you to not only name what’s happening in and around you, but also focus on employing practical strategies to move yourself forward in the midst of this crazy and uncertain time. You’re worth it!
If you’re interested in learning more about managing your lifestyle, love, and loyalties to God and others, click here: https://mekelharrisphd.com/.