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In times of change, be gentle with yourself.

By Andrea Kartika Deierlein

· Selfcare

"Sometimes you just need to be open to receive, enjoy the moment, and feel the love." - Andrea Kartika

It’s been two weeks since our lives have come to a screeching halt. For some, the adjustment to this new way of being is more challenging and painful than others. Some days are easier. Some days are just plain hard. That’s just the way it is.

I took this selfie with my dog Nesia after I received a distance Reiki session from my friend. Even though we are more than 4,000 miles and 7 hours apart, it was a beautiful way to connect. I felt all calm and relaxed, like this whole pandemic weren't happening. How I wish that we could only step out of this SciFi movie right now!

But we are experiencing unprecedented times. We are in this weird space where all answers and explanations lost their anchor. When the only consistent thing is uncertainty and we don’t know how long this situation is going to last.

On the good days it is tempting to follow the sirens of doing and fall back into the old and familiar trap of busyness. This can show up by filling the time with online classes, webinars, and self-improvement. But as one of my go-to resources, Lorna Bevan from Hare in the Moon Astrology, wrote in a Facebook post: “This is self-brutality disguised as self-empowerment.”

During this time of change, let's be gentle with ourselves. While under "normal circumstances" pushing ourselves is a no-brainer, in times of stress it takes much more energy just to function.

My body is a reliable GPS, so when I step out of alignment, my left shoulder speaks.. very loudly... to remind me to let go of the tension... and soften... As a result, I have been thinking a lot about acceptance and surrender. But what does it really mean… to accept? To surrender?

It’s about letting go. Letting go of all the illusions, all the expectations, all the shoulds, the futile attempts of fixing things, being more productive, efficient, perfect, whatever we feel we need to be.

It’s about meeting each moment as it is.

In Stillness Speaks, Eckhart Tolle wrote: “When you fully accept that you don’t know, you give up struggling to find answers with the limited thinking mind, and that is when a greater intelligence can operate through you. […] Sometimes surrender means giving up trying to understand and becoming comfortable with not knowing.”

For now, I let go of the struggle to understand, of the illusion that I am in control. Just for this moment, I am silent, so I can listen… to what I really need, which is rest, because adjusting to this "new world" is exhausting.

If you need support with finding your inner calm, the Crestwood Library invited me to facilitate a Mindful Monday session every Monday morning in April & May, from 9:00-9:45 a.m. You can join through the events page on my website, where you can find several free mindfulness & meditation offerings (via Zoom) with me.

Please take excellent care of yourself and stay safe!

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