It’s a challenge we’re all faced with – how to stay mentally and emotionally well as so much has changed so quickly, and keeps doing so.

Here are three gems I found this week to help us do just that! They’ve made me smile, helped me relax and shown me how to find and use my own strength and resilience, even as we can’t know yet what kind of future we’re moving toward,. These three posts each offer something something that uplifts the heart, relaxes the body and elevates the spirit, all contributing to our overall health. 

But they’re not only good for you, they’re totally enjoyable. 

How Do You Want To Feel in Your Next Phase?

One of the things that I’ve noticed is that there is a LOT of talk about what you have to get done, the projects that you want to do and all of the tasks that will prepare you for coming out of this.

Let’s get real. We don’t have any idea what coming out of this is going to look like. We don’t know when that’s going to happen, or what will return to the way it was & what will be different as we bounce forward.

~ Lara Heacock

In her opening paragraph, Lara Heacock vividly and accurately captures the experience of being locked down. That’s one reason I love her post. 

Another reason I love it is that the idea she offers us is right on point. She wants us to focus on how we will be feeling in the future, rather than on trying to plan what we’ll be doing.

That makes so much sense given we have no way to know what might be going on next week, let alone what will be happening 6 months from now.  For most of us, planning for what we might be doing  half a year from now doesn’t make a lot of sense.  Everything’s still too uncertain.  But we can certainly hold a vision for “being,” and give some thought to how we hope to feel 6 months from now. 

Her post ends with a brief, brainstorm style intention-setting exercise that is so much fun, and at the same time, so powerful. I did it in far less than the 30 minutes she suggests, and it gave me some very welcome guidance. If I want to feel safe, happy, purposeful, aligned, engaged, loved, and loving six months out, what should I be doing now?  It seems clear the answer to that question has everything to do with doing the inner work and choosing projects and activities now that induce those emotions.

Give it a try and see what emerges for you. 

Seeing Through Veils

Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.

~ Rachel Carson, quoted at Susan Preston Studio

Susan’s site offers post after post of her beautifully composed photographs that share the inspiration and hope evoked by our natural surroundings. For me, her images inspire love, awe, wonder, and awareness of our interconnectedness to all living beings. Her carefully worded brief comments with each photograph provoke deep thought and insight.

I’ve returned to her site many times to visit this post. The up close image leaves me feeling a bit of an intruder into the deer’s space, and yet it  seems to accept my presence and generously gift me with a sense of peace and hope. The quote and question that accompany it create the opportunity to stopand tune in to what’s happening in mind and heart.

You’ll get so much from exploring the beauty of the natural world through Susan’s eyes.

How to Navigate Through Difficult Times and Build Resilience 

Looking at the way I dealt with this past experience and how I deal with sudden changes today helped me realize how far I have come.

~ Michal Spiegelman

Michal Spiegelman’s post made me so happy on so many levels. Michal attended the online mini-retreat I offered in April.  In her post, she writes so movingly about what the retreat meant to her.  The mini-retreat was designed to promote calmness, centering, and healing, which is always useful, but especially needed during the turbulence of the pandemic. One of the prompts I offered invited participants to recall a time in the past when they coped with a difficult situation, and thrived afterwards. This provides awareness of the inner resources and wisdom we can call. on now. The prompt brought a past trauma to mind for her. Through the retreat’s safe, supportive structure and  facilitated writing, she processed the experience in a meaningful way. She took this healing experience further by later talking about the experience with close family members who were also affected by it. 

I am so happy about the positive impact the writing had for Michal, and the others who were there. Reading her account of it  has had a positive impact on me! It made me feel aligned and purposeful (two of the words I brainstormed using Lara’s exercise), and very excited about the next mini-retreat.  And I loved that the experience inspired her to create writing prompts to share with her readers. Visit her post to give them a try and see what you discover.

 Online Mini Retreat Coming In June

The mini-retreat Michal wrote about was a powerful healing experience, one very much needed as we all make our way through this turbulent time. We’ve decided to hold another one. It’s coming up on Saturday, June 6th. You’re invited to join us!  If you’re curious about how writing can help you heal, this mini-retreat is for you. You don’t have to think of yourself as a “good” writer to enjoy and benefit from the experience. And my Pay-What-You-Wish option makes it accessible, which is important since so many are dealing with limited means during the pandemic. Get the details and save your spot here. 

Some More Beautiful Gems

Barb Suarez is the go-to resource for expectant and new parents.In addition to her outstanding blog, Barb is the childbirth and parenting educator I wish I’d had 30+ years ago. Her classes – Childbirth Prep, Becoming Us, Couples Connection, and Couples Coaching Sessions are now available online. You’ll find the details on her site.

Sara Eisenberg is currently hosting free online gatherings on Wednesdays for practice, reflection, and sharing. Her web posts are unfailingly deep, personal and spiritual explorations of topics important to our times.

Kelly Indra Inselman knows what cancer survivors need. She’s a tremendous resource. Having had cancer herself, she shares compassion, wisdom, and healing through her in-person and online classes, guided meditations, and talk therapy. Visit her blog to find all that she offers.

Jeffrey Davis, branding consultant for creatives, entrepreneurs and business leaders is currently offering free Master Classes and other resources to provide much-needed support during the pandemic.

Credit

Photo by Dan Farrell on Unsplash

Thank you to Julia Barnickle for sharing Lara’s post in her Facebook group, What if Life Were Meant to Be Easy?

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