I think whatever your politics may be, we can all agree that it was a tough election, and a very tough couple of weeks following the election. If you read the news, you may have noticed the upsurge in hate crimes related to race and religion, which is horrifying and disheartening. And while it can be easy for some people to say "look on the bright side," "don't let the negativity affect you," "let's talk about more pleasant things," I tend to notice that those very people are least likely to be affected by any sweeping changes that may occur under a new presidency. Maybe we could try a different kind of Monday Mindfulness, where rather than (or in addition to) engaging in our own awareness and our own bodies, we extend that very mindfulness to others. And let that mindfulness extend to action. Let's talk to each other. Let's support each other. Whoever you voted for, there were reasons you did so. Let's try to understand each other's reasons. And let's try to remember we are all human, and we crave understanding and sympathy from other humans. This is not the time to "move on" or "talk about something else," but neither is it the time for negativity. Rather, let's reflect on what we can do to make what's happening in our country better. And don't forget to breathe deeply and engage with where you are right this very minute. You'll never be in this moment again.
Remember the TV Show Mash? Think Mash for inner battles and challenged bodies, in severe cold, and add to the group of Doctors an eclectic assortment of amazing holistic, herbal and hands-on healers... and you start to picture our medic camp. There are many seriously bad-ass activists here with beautiful hearts. Intense, healing on all levels. Spiritual war zone. Healing anchor for our cause.
I’m sure you’re familiar with that nerve-wracking period of time leading up to a big change. If it’s a sad or otherwise negative change, you may be dreading the change but also sick of waiting for it to occur; you’d rather just get it over with. And a positive change can also cause a strange mix of emotions. There is the anxiety over any kind of change, coupled with the anticipation of new and wonderful circumstances, and the promise of improvement. But there is also uncertainty and fear, and in the absence of those there may still be a degree of stomach turning nervousness.
I know that for myself, leading up to a challenging task of landmark event in my life--positive or negative--I am a bundle of nerves and can hardly sit still. Then afterwards, I am usually in a mildly euphoric state of relaxation coming down from the high of nervousness. I would prefer to have a bit more stability when it comes to these changes, or at least some of them. Highs and lows and the extremes of those are valuable and inspiring, but a bit much to deal with on the regular. The source of those nerves can be a lack of experience or familiarity, say if the upcoming event is a new challenge for me and one I haven’t undertaken previously (such as a big presentation or planning an event), and hopefully as the challenge repeats itself, those nerves start to quiet down. However, what to do in the meantime? How to live your life with these ups and downs, while also being mindful?
For me, I try to remind myself to be in the moment. Two weeks leading up to the event/change/challenge/etc., I may start to get really nervous whenever I think about it. So I try to remind myself: “You have plenty of time to be nervous about this next week. Wait until then.”
Then when “next week” rolls around, I remind myself, “You’re going to be nervous about this the day before. But you’re going to be prepared. You have time to prepare yourself and get ready for the day this change comes.” And the night before, naturally, I’m practically a basket case. So I try to do things that tire out my body and distract my mind: yoga, the gym, a movie I love, a book, a home improvement project, a night out with a friend. So for me, the process seems to be: try not to worry and just live your life→ prepare→ PREPARE→ try to relax and keep your mind and worries at bay and also sleep! → THE DAY → whew, that was totally fine. Maybe next time I won’t worry so much…
What are your processes for dealing with change? Do you try to shape them or do you let them shape you?
Era of Care has hosted a number of events locally, but we are now getting ready to do our first outreach outside our local area! to go help with trauma support for the Dakota Pipeline Activists. The people standing at this historical event need our support, they are under a huge amount of stress right now!
We are joining a wonderful team of medics and healers who are building a wellness center there where we will be able to set up support. We are compiling best natural practices for trauma, anxiety, panic and general stress. Additionally we will have hands-on and holistic treatments.
Please come to the benefit on Nov 6th in Sebastopol with wellness and health related donations, see the flyer below or go to the facebook page.
We also greatly appreciate financial donations, all money will go directly to support our trauma team and supplies for wellness. Donations are tax deductible and we offer financial transparency upon inquiry. Check back for updates on our needs as we go. Thank you!