Maintaining Balance in Unusual Times (Guest Post)
Posted on Friday, June 4th, 2010
We’ve finally arrived at the threshold of the long-awaited Summer of 2010. Stargazers have been wondering what this particular summer might bring because there is a rare alignment of planets in the sky. The last time they danced together was during the revolutionary mid-60s when the unexpected coincided with social unrest and an unraveling of oppression. Many people now wonder what these next few months have in store for us.
We seem to be perched on the edge of a new evolutionary leap. We are witnessing intense times, not unlike what many of our ancestors saw, but more troubling because of the 24-hour news cycle which keeps us continually abreast of worldwide details. We all know how jarring and upsetting the news can be, especially lately with the added feelings of helplessness around the oil “spill.” Seeing what seems so much more than a leak or a spill, we aren’t quite certain what to make of it.
Feelings of helplessness can cause high levels of stress. People feel better when they can take action to make a change or at least feel they are doing something, anything, to exert control over a difficult situation.
It is wise to convert feelings of helplessness into something less stressful. One way is to explore how you can make a positive difference in your own community. By taking small steps – even something as simple as donating old towels to your local animal shelter – you can feel better about not being able to do much on the bigger scale. Your action doesn’t have to be huge to relieve a sense of helplessness. It will help to just do something to benefit your small corner of the planet.
When you’re under higher stress than normal due to outside circumstances you can’t control, it is important to take a holistic approach to feel stronger, more serene and balanced. This means paying attention to your physical body – and also your mental state, your emotions and your spirit.
Questions and concerns are swirling around in the minds of almost everyone at any given time, and we have multiple situations where we are more easily affected by what I call the “group think.”
The “group think” is powerful because you can be swept into it without realizing it. It occurs when many people begin feeling or believing in the same way until the power of the belief or feeling expands to the point of becoming very influential. Just consider mass hysteria and how it spreads like wildfire, and you’ll get the picture. When you are aware of this phenomenon and how it can affect your perceptions, you can begin to separate your own thoughts and feelings from that of the mass consciousness.
There are good reasons why it is wise to know when your thoughts belong to you or to the group. Mass consciousness, at least up to now, has been tightly woven with fear. Any time you are swept into a tide that is based on fear, you lose sight of your higher perspective, the quality of your life is diminished, and you are not living from your own centered place.
These are times to maintain perspective, be centered and be aware when you are caught up in a stream of fear-based reactions. What can you actually do to keep your balance or regain it once it’s lost? There are some simple steps you can take:
- Nourish your body with whole, real food. Make yourself a few of your favorite comfort foods.
- Limit your sugar intake, as it’s directly linked with anxiety and mood swings.
- Re-evaluate your need to be busy, busy, busy. Sit back and relax a little. Enjoy the warmth of the sun.
- Take a two day news break once a week. No TV, newspaper or online news. Let your mind be free from the onslaught.
- Relax your shoulders and breathe slowly, regularly, more deeply.
- Turn off the computer in the early evening. To help relax your mind, meditate or read a good novel before bed.
- Pray, visualize or otherwise request what you would like to see in the world.
- Have a bottle of Bach Rescue Remedy handy – a natural stress-reliever.
- Get connected with the earth by going out into nature. This will balance your energy.
- Surround yourself with positive, uplifting people.
– Christina Grant, Ph.D.