26 Mar Cultivating Hope
The past few weeks have been a huge challenge for all of us, there’s no doubt. And for many of us feelings of anxiety or fear have cropped up, sometimes in random moments, sometimes for more of a prolonged period of time, and I think it’s really important to acknowledge that anxiety. Anxiety is a very normal response to a world that’s shifting and changing all around us.
However, over the past few days I personally have been able to implement a few strategies that have helped me move away from anxiety, not completely, but for the most part.
And I wanted to share with you a few ways I have been doing that.
Firstly, I committed to stop reading the news so incessantly. I now watch the daily briefing and look at the WHO stats to get information, rather than sensationalisation. A part of me feels like the newspapers are loving this situation, and I for one don’t need to be part of that. Reducing my intake of news has been like balm for my subconscious, instead of feeding it stories about what to be afraid of, I now pay attention to my immediate surroundings, which are far more peaceful. I’m not in denial about what’s going on, I’m just choosing to take in minimal and relevant detail.
Next, I have been journaling in the morning and asking myself certain questions. Firstly, what are my ‘gremlins’ saying to me at the moment (mostly ‘oh my god I’m on my own and I won’t see anyone for weeks and that means I’m going to fall apart arghhhh’) and I then find a counter story (which is currently, I am not going to fall apart. This is a beautiful opportunity to connect with myself and slow things down). I have also been noting down my feelings, in order to just let myself feel, and I’ve been writing down a permission slip each day. Today it is ‘I give myself permission to take things very slowly and to breathe.’ Practicing these strategies makes me feel supported, and aware, and it reminds me how resourceful I am and how there are ways to navigate hard times.
Further to this I have been using Insight Timer and more recently I have started with Deepak Chopra and Oprah’s meditation series on Finding Hope in Uncertain Times. Meditating is calming and again helps us to feel more resourceful as we navigate choppy waters.
There are so many ways we can self-support. And when things get really hard it’s easy to forget these strategies. My invitation to you today is to spend 10 minutes thinking about what practices you could make a daily habit in order to feel grounded, safe and hopeful.
With love as always, Hannah and Team Bird
Ps. We are delivering webinars on resilience via some organisations and we are wondering whether it would be beneficial to run these openly for our readers too. If you would be interested in attending a resilience webinar please let me know.