As I walk to my exercise place this morning, the sun is high. The air is not as fresh as it would have been a little earlier. I feel annoyance with myself for not getting out of bed on time to avoid the discomfort of the heat especially with having to wear a face mask required by government dictates at this time of the covid-19 crisis.
I love this part of the day when I have time to think, to clear and rest my mind before the activities of the day begin. As I approach the ocean shore I think how fortunate I am to be able so quickly to come to a place that is peacefully not changing. The ocean is here as it was yesterday and where it will be tomorrow. My anxiety lessens. As I look around I see the little bird who is always here; I call him a shore runner. He was here yesterday and will be here tomorrow. My mood lifts; I start to breathe more deeply. My feeling of safety kicks in. What I see around me is familiar.
As I begin my exercise routine, thoughts come into my mind of a blog I can write today. The theme is one I have pondered before at a time of crisis. I even began to write this blog at that time. For months this part of the country had experienced a drought. Then suddenly the rains came in torrents, flooding the country side. The unrelenting downpour destroyed vulnerable structures like bridges and many of the main roads. The supply of goods and the transit system, both of which were dependent on those main roads were affected causing shortages of food and other goods and blocking transport of people to and from their areas of work.
From my safe place off the major transit grid, I wrote these thoughts in my journal. Pathways are blocked. Normal systems are not possible. Alternatives must be considered. The value of these alternatives would not be seen in normal circumstances. I knew the creativity mindset of the local people and how their life experience of surviving in hard times would serve them well. They could survive from the safe emotional place of close family ties, secure friendship connections, and an unchanging security they see in nature’s bounty, meagre perhaps but still available.
Now, of course, there seems to be no safe place for anyone in the first stages of a pandemic. All around us, everywhere in the world, terrible changes are making us afraid, unsure, and anxious as is the expected emotional response.
For all of us this is a time that demands learning. As a former teacher, a facilitator of learning for adults and children, the first requirement was to promote a feeling of safety for the students. To learn, to be creative in one’s thinking, and to participate fully one must feel safe.
How can we promote a feeling of safety in our own minds? How can we perceive this crisis from a safe place in our minds that will enable us to respond with creative thinking, see new possibilities? How can we make new connections that will help us to adapt in new ways, to recognize the alternatives that will surely present themselves?
Is there a message in this advice? “When all around you, there is great change, look for what is NOT changing” At the beginning of this blog, I described how this technique worked for me to take me to a safe mind place. I started to think creatively. As I left my ocean side peaceful place, I began to compose in my mind. When I arrived home the writing began.
I hope this helps you, my reader. Let me know if it does. Add to my learning. Please leave a reply.