I am going to share a tool with you that can really help you with feeling extra anxious and on guard. Because, I think we can agree, there’s a LOT of that going around.
I love this tool because it puts the power back in your hands and allows you to feel ease and relaxation again. I imagine you want to feel safe and at peace so you can do the work you are here to do.
It’s becoming very clear we are not out of the woods and in these times, I imagine you have important questions, like:
How do I feel safe again in the midst of even more turmoil?
How do I regain my confidence to move forward?
You need to stay curious.
Curiosity allows you to stay in an open space of possibility, and stay connected to your inner resources and power. Fear and anxiety always put the body on high alert and cause your mind to contract. In contraction, you end up being highly reactive to others, and functioning from your limbic brain, the ancient part of us that truly believes a tiger is coming to attack us. When you are in this heightened state, you can find yourself freezing in inaction and just turning away from the world to shut down, or becoming so anxious you can’t think of anything else. It’s as though your system has been hijacked, and you feel out of control.
Curiosity acts as a loving embrace in these times, and helps to interrupt the doomsday spiral that things will never get better. And most of all, curiosity reconnects you with your confidence.
A simple tool you can use right now, is to ask one important question.
When anxiety arises or you feel overwhelmed, take a moment. Step away from your computer or device, and find a comfortable seat. Feel your feet on the ground, and your tailbone settling down. Place your hand over your heart or your belly (or both) and take three deep breaths. Close your eyes and ask your body, “what is this?”
When you are feeling scared and anxious, or have taken in unsettling news, staying in curiosity allows you to first FEEL what you are feeling. And it’s important to do this without judgement and instead with compassion and acceptance. Allowing yourself to feel your feelings creates more space, and energetic flow in your body. From here, you can then take a loving step back to gain clarity about what you need.
Because when you are able to meet your needs, you are unstoppable. You are back in contact with your capability, and your confidence, and you are able to take necessary action that places the power back in your hands.
Let me give you a real life example.
In New Jersey, we have been having a very hot summer, with high humidity. Having only lived in this house for a year, we found ourselves having to replace our AC unit. I started to notice when the new system was in that the humidity was much higher. As I am healing from mold toxicity, it is really important that we keep the humidity levels at a certain percentage so no new mold growth occurs. As I saw humidity readings on our hygrometer that were over, I started to get really concerned. We got a larger dehumidifier and I held my breath hoping that would work. But the numbers continued to be high. Every day I was looking at the hygrometer and getting more and more scared.
And we were trying all kinds of things, like leaving all the doors open at night for better airflow, and I was asking our HVAC guy tons of questions. And then last week, I went down into our basement to vacuum and saw an area by the washing machine with black growth. I froze. I was terrified this was mold, and didn’t sleep well that night, and the next morning called the environmental hygienist to make an appointment as soon as possible. He knew my history, knew how important it was to have a clean home and when he saw a photo of the area by the washing machine, he made it a priority to come out. I then took out a blank piece of paper to write down questions.
Upon his arrival, the first thing he did was take out his meter to give a true reading of the humidity and set it by my hygrometer. After a few minutes, his number was VERY different from my meter, actually by 10. My hygrometer was wrong. The numbers I had been staring at for weeks were off, and the humidity level in our home was actually safe. What’s more, he took air samples and cleaned up the stain in the basement. All was well. No mold.
And I felt such a SHIFT in my body when I got the news. I realized how worked up I had gotten, how scared, and how once I had real answers, how much better I felt. The situation wasn’t what was forming in my mind.
And the way I was able to find out was because I kept asking questions, and specifically questions of myself. I stayed curious and that helped me stay out of feeling like a victim and instead take the steps necessary to resolve the issue. And please know, this was terrifying for me. I’ve been dealing with mold toxicity for over two and a half years, so my desire to fully recover is the most important thing to me.
My confidence is what allows me to stay committed in the face of fear, the confidence that I am capable. And you possess this same confidence within you, a power that remains no matter what the “meters” in your life are saying, especially when they are shouting you are not safe.
What if there is another answer? What if you have all you need to feel safe right now?
For myself, I felt my fear and was able to connect to my need for clarity. Connecting to my need for clarity motivated me to ask for help from trusted resources who I knew were just as committed to my well being as I was.
Black and white thinking is at an all time high right now, and continues to divide and conquer us when what we truly need is to come together. What black and white thinking doesn’t allow for is creativity, or inclusivity. It only offers two ways that things can possibly be, either right or wrong. And while it may feel safe at first, it only creates more anxiety and suffering for a longer amount of time.
And I can imagine, you don’t want to wait anymore:)
So the next time you feel yourself wanting to contract and retreat, hold your hand over your heart, feel your breath and simply ask, “what is this?”
Feel what you are feeling without judgement, and then ask, “what do I need?”Practice curiosity and stay open to your unlimited power within.