Abstract.....While grappling with uncertainty, the question often arises how to get back the restored sense of self. It’s the awareness of self that we can develop as time rolls by, once we are hit with the realization that the healthy ongoing feeling, the one that evokes authenticity, has long gone away and all we are performing is the role of an existential living.
The simplest definition of loss would be an encountered experience that depletes our capacity to process it, overwhelms us beyond any word, so much so that our capacity to cope is washed up. Given the havoc caused by the COVID to our daily living, our sense of safety and trust, confidence and control has been ruthlessly snatched away from the heart and mind. The spectrum of worldwide events, the impact of this COVID pandemic on them has been undeniably traumatizing on every living, breathing being on this earth. In the process, we deplete the force of the spirit. But the ‘giving out’ has to be accompanied by a ‘giving in’ to maintain the balance of the self so we can have a renewed restoration. The response to the COVID is experienced on both the individual and collective level, as it is not just an individual loss, but the loss of the nations, the countries and the world as a whole.
It is not startling for trauma responses to resurface, for the loss to creep in our minds and shake our beliefs in everything we ever had. Global and community disaster have put us in the crossroads of life, and we are beginning to wonder how to continue living when the lived are getting strangled by the invading COVID. The feelings of fear, frustration and helplessness, and at times they evoke prior traumatic experiences. With pour minds in crisis, we can feel destabilizing. Everyone is undergoing a staggering transformation, but to bring back ourselves to what we were and who we used to be, raises an inevitable question. How do we do that?
Below is a list of ways of how to restore the sense of self, once again in our broken hearts and shaking minds. Predictability needs to be created and in the long haul, needs to be sustained for the sustenance of our own selves. It constitutes an essential part in rising through the crevices of a staggering confidence. To plan and purposefully engage in activities would be a necessary step in managing the uncertainty and unpredictability. While practicing this, it will empower us to have faith in our own capacity and allow control in the areas where things have gone out of control. While it cannot bring back the lost ones, but it can revive what is almost about to be lost if not taken well care of.
To begin a day with a positive affirmation, to offer oneself with an uplifting message would be the essential bread for daily living. Affirmations can lift the broken hearts so they can validate their own emotions and losses, acknowledge their experiences. They set a purpose of living, a well- built grounding and with regular repetition, they become a part of us. The positive affirmation becomes the sacred ritual of living. A prayer, or a religious scripture, a song or a poem that enters the deepest recesses in us, begins to speak to our hearts and we become able to translate the loss into words and find ourselves into light again.
To connect daily with sources of support is to tell the tales of sharing and caring when life seems to be so isolated and loneliness comes to invade the spirit. To set up a virtual date with a friend and to do things together would be meaningfully break out form the world of engulfing loneliness. To create something together, to listen to music or watch a heart rendering movie together would bring back the times we once had. Or a weekly email to a relative or a friend can revive the connection that we have.
To pay attention to the sleep is to pay attention to the self as during the sleep, the body and mind are repaired, restored and cleared away and the stressed minds are destressed. Thus we become ready to be the fearless fighters for all the tomorrows to come.
Working from home, we can engage in quiet strolls in the evening around the block or take a retreat while walking in the forest trails as we set apart the end of a working daytime. In the process of working, we do not have to wipe out the essentialities of nourishing our spirits. We can stick to having meals around the same time. Next, we can allow ourselves to have a break every one or two hours while setting an alarm clock to give ourselves the reminder that we need a relaxation. The notifications need to be turned off, so our eyes and minds do not catch an addiction and we can impose a limit on checking the calls and emails even during non-working hours. All these can be improvised so we do not become computer addicts and perform as humans who very well have body that demands self- care too.
To practice self-care, we need to be intentional about it, in the first place. We can practice deep breathing, go for the quiet strolls in the heart of nature, indulge in activities that nourish us with self-pleasure, delve into the fascinating readings that will evoke the finer feelings of life. We can begin to have a pet, find love in the flurry softness of them and believe that life can have its own tenderness and not just brutality. Some time can be set aside for practicing a guided meditation and indulge in nature gazing. As we are enlivened shaking off the stress, we can indulge in dancing, as it will create a rhythm in our souls, raising it from static to a dynamism. Or we can turn up the favorite music or a song that speaks to the pain, and find comfort in its releasing words.
We can even begin journaling as the words flow form our hearts to the paper. The things we struggle with can all be released, beautifully and painlessly. We can jot down what makes something easy versus what makes something stubbornly difficult. What are the lessons learnt from this abrupt, earth shattering COVID? To something that we were unprepared for, to the changes that we were unaccustomed to, what wisdom did it bring to our lives. We can create a list of things that we have accomplished even in these tough, frustrating times so we can reward ourselves with some positivity. It can bring out what we could do even when life threw us its hardest hit. In addition, we can engage in reading a blog that can cheer our spirits or one which can well resonate with us.
When times are plenty at our hands, we can indulge in long, reflective walks that will heighten our senses. As we return home, we can willfully engage in a home project. And when the day comes to an end, we can attend a social media platform to connect with family and friends. Not all sources of connection are depleted. Attending a virtual concert, or a taking a zoo tour or a trip to the beach, listening to the waves crashing virtually can set a rhythm in the restless minds. Or we can tune in to a podcast on a topic that catches our hearts and let it fill our curious minds.
Author.....Jayita Bhattacharjee....born in Calcutta, India and later on education from University of Houston in Economics, she had chosen her career as a trustee and teacher. Her Indian residence is in the vicinity of the famous Belurmath. Currently, she is settled in Tampa, Florida. Her books " The Ecstatic Dance of Life", " Sacred Sanctuary", " Light of Consciousness", " Dewdrops of Compassion" " are among the many that she has authored. https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6850731.Jayita_Bhattacharjee