The Cook Awakening

2020 Summertime Skills

August 2, 2020
Posted in: Seasonal Change

Summertime. There’s a quickening as the sun comes out more consistently. Even in times such as these, as the world grapples with how best to respond to the pandemic, how best to respond to government over-reach or under-reach.

Whether you’re in an area that is opening up COVID-19 restrictions quickly or cautiously, there’s probably a bit more options for activity — socializing outside, folks figuring out how to work safely, whether with masks or in the open air (I now have an outside office on my side porch with plenty of airflow and distance), perhaps some travel to see family or camp.

I have numerous clients coming in with reports of general over stimulation, and self judgment about it. “I shouldn’t be feeling like this! I used to do three times what I’m doing now with no problem at all!”

Borage and Jude the Obscure rose in spring water and sunshine, Fierce Love flower essence in the making.

You may know that I have been on many meditation retreats. I lived part time in a meditation center for 10 years in my 30s. There were long retreats that I participated in. I continued to go to week long retreats after I became a mom and the family could manage with me being gone.

Re-entering daily life after a long period of relative silence takes care. We are sensitive beings with nervous systems that need care. Especially if we have significant wounding or trauma from childhood or our lineages!

I still notice a generalized, uncomfortable “buzz” in my body the first day after a retreat. Just talking to someone for more than a couple of minutes can feel overstimulating after days of quiet. I’ll never forget the first retreat I went on 35 years ago. Luckily one of the teachers was kind enough to coach me a bit. “Hold onto your purse, you’re likely to feel a bit spaced out and forget it somewhere!” I well remember the electrified sense in my body. And, that has happened consistently after every retreat I’ve been on since. It’s a simple nervous system response.

COVID-19 has been like an enforced retreat for many of us. Unless you’re an essential worker, then you might have experienced no retreat.

If you’ve been protesting, you’ve come out of this pandemic retreat with a bang. You’re likely really feeling a speedy, jangly quality in your being.

All this to say, it’s normal to feel dysregulated right now. Life is demanding things of most of us that we’re not used to. There’s more energy in our cities, pressure to “get back to normal” and/or “change normal”. And, it’s more stimulating.

My wish for you is that you are able to take parts of your life slowly. Much of what is happening is important. We need to exercise our 1st amendment rights (in the US), we need safe social interaction, we need to support ourselves. And, we need to tend to ourselves as we adjust to more activity.

What helps your nervous system calm down? You probably already have methods. Deeper breathing. A walk in nature. Meditation. A warm bath. Time alone. Time snuggling (if you’re fortunate enough to have a snuggle partner in your pandemic pod). Time hanging out with pets. Lying on the earth, or at least bare feet in grass. Tree hugging (it’s great, try it!).

This is not selfish. This is what makes your life sustainable.

What are your calming skills? I’d love to know.

And, of course, if you’re finding you don’t have strong skills in this area, please ask for help. I have some space in my schedule. If not with me, find a trusted counselor and do the work to regulate yourself. You’re worth it.

This entry was posted on Sunday, August 2nd, 2020 at 2:28 pm and is filed under Seasonal Change. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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