In the first 31 days our retinas have seen lies, anger and hatred boil over to form an insurrection. In the first 31 days we witnessed an oath taken every four years usher in a new beginning and heard a poet deliver a Rhema word of hope. It seems like unity is threadbare and seeing each other's humanity null. While this is not a new paradigm, we certainly are experiencing a reawakening of the ugliest parts of our country and more importantly the raw animalistic nature of humankind. All this stands alongside a pandemic that has affected and continues to affect families near and far, domestic and abroad. So, one month into a new year, I can’t help wondering what the resolutions, vision boards and planning strategies reflect.
Normally, my position is to “plan” quarterly. This allows me to assess what has worked or failed during that time and to refine where needed. I use this practice to manage my business affairs. Yet, this entry is an invitation to reflect, refocus and refine, where needed, based on where we find ourselves emotionally and mentally, 31 days into 2021. Why? As highlighted in the opening much has and remains going on in our world. There is no way to completely buffer oneself from feeling its effect.
While reflecting, I noticed moments where tension seemed to cover me like a cloak. During these times I slowed down to explore where it was coming from and what was in my control to decrease or eliminate it. We cannot change all the variables around us yet there is always something, we can do to bring down the intensity of how we experience it. This leads to refocusing.
In incorporating small actions when I felt tense, I was able to refocus and better troubleshoot what was triggering me. For example, the day of the Capitol riots, when it came to my attention like many, I watched things unfold. Yet noticing myself beginning to feel agitated and a bit concerned, I turned off the television and stayed off social media for the rest of the day. Fasting from television and or social media helps tremendously in refocusing on goals and decreasing feelings of dis-ease. While both can be helpful, it is easy to become distracted, consumed and even addicted to such platforms which do not promote mental wellness long term.
In the process of reflecting and refocusing we identify what is and isn’t working for our mental wellness. This evaluation allows us to refine how, or if, we need to continue to engage in those areas. Just as the new year and springtime invite a “cleaning and clearing” period, we need to do the same for our mental wellness. If this clearing involves letting go of people, know that every ending of a relationship or friendship does not require that we become enemies. Be grateful for the season and lessons and move forward. The same applies when moving from a job or letting go of stuff. It has served its purpose, now release with gratitude.
Daily I post a gratitude statement on my business and personal social media pages. This practice grew after completing a session of R3 last year. In all that I have heard from and having held close while listening to the concerns of my clients during the pandemic, my feelings of gratitude increased profoundly. We indeed have hard days, but even in the hardest of days, there remains something to be grateful for. The R3 cycle is valuable however often you choose to incorporate it.
May Your Hope Be Full,