Connecting inwards and outwards
'Let’s focus on what’s going to support the love, the caring. What’s going to support the kindness and compassion. Whatever we give our attention to is likely to grow, so much better we put our attention to those things than fear.'
Mike Booth, Chairman Aura-Soma
We get it and we feel it. The world as you know it has turned upside down. Fear is lurking in every corner. However: herein all of your strength, love, and potential lies. The time is now to know your depth and discover your resilience and above all your capacity to channel love to others. So, when the world feels crazy and out of control know there is still one thing you have the power to choose: the way you handle it.
We may be isolating ourselves in the physical sense, but now more than ever we must reach out and reach in. We must connect, outwardly and inwardly. Be kind to ourselves and others. For where the mind goes, energy flows. And never more than in times of adversity, does compassion prevail.
We know that at stressful times it can be so hard to sit and meditate, or do what we know is good for us; regular practice can suddenly get swapped in a flash for wine / chocolate / panic / [fill-as-appropriate].
But remember: a deep and eternal reservoir of peace lies within you. An awareness that, when you quieten the chatter of your mind, connects you to all things – feeding you a direct line of strength, wisdom and resilience. And it’s there always, no matter what is happening.
Two ways to access this portal of pure peace at times of high stress is by practicing meditation and mindfulness. From a spiritual perspective it will feed your soul and connect you to universal consciousness. But if you fancy getting sciencey about it – we know both practices change our brains’ neurology, reducing our fight or flight response and increasing our resilience, immunity and compassion.
If you can meditate, do. Why not try introducing the a Pomander or Quintessence into your meditation routine?. But if that feels too much for you at the moment why not try using one to support these little mindfulness exercises:
Regularly stop and connect with your breath for a few moments. Feel it coming in and out of your nostrils, don’t try to change it – just observe it. Notice how your mind quietens for just a moment. To get you into the habit try sticking post-it notes on things you come into contact with regularly to remind you to do it (the kettle, the cupboard, above the kitchen sink).
Shhhh that monkey brain
When ‘the monkey brain’ takes hold and you find yourself hooked on a negative thought stream, stop. You can do this by tuning into one of your senses for a few moments and notice what you’re feeling, hearing, seeing or smelling (you’ll find it’s impossible to think and connect with one of your senses at the same time).
Pause and take note
Whether you’re in a city, town or village, try to take note of your surroundings. Mindfulness practices encourage us to pause and really notice where we are. Whilst there might not be an abundance of nature around you, we hope that you can enjoy your surroundings and find new meaning in where you live.
Keep a diary
In adjusting to our new normal, and all the intricacies that come with that, keeping a diary or journal is a great way to come to terms with our new day to day. Writing in a stream of consciousness can lead us to better self-understanding, noting down bits and pieces from our day can remind us of how resilient we are. We’re living in unprecedented times, a time which will be reflected upon by future generations, diarise all those important changes you have made that you can look back proudly on in the future.
Set a daily intention
At the start of each day – it will help refocus you and keep you aligned with your values while boosting the energy you emit to others.
Let yourself off the hook
It’s ok to feel low, exhausted, emotional – we’re in a big period of readjustment. Be kind to yourself, sit, drink tea, let it out, know you’re not the only one and ‘this too shall pass’. Aura-Soma custodian Mike Booth recently reminded us that to help us ‘reset’ “the White Pomander brings light into the auric field and protects us at an electromagnetic level across the spectrum of vibrations that is necessary at this point in time”
Now more than ever we face realising just how social a species we truly are. We may be isolated, but we can still connect and commit ourselves to small acts of kindness (not only does it help others, an altruistic attitude boosts our own health and happiness levels).
Reach out to friends, family and colleagues
Discover Zoom (the social streaming platform that connects up to 100 people at a time), connect on Skype and FaceTime so you can ‘virtually’ cook together, laugh together, do quizzes together, support each other. And get creative: write poems for loved ones, draw pictures and make cards for them even if you think you’re no good at it – it may give them a lift just when they need it.
Connect with your children
Be it baking, creating, reading or messy play, now is the time to get to know them and there’s no better gift for a child than a present parent. Give yourself the gift too of meeting them in their own joy, allow your inner-child a little playfulness – you never know, you might just be making some of the best memories they’ll ever have.
Reach out to your local community
What can you do to help others? What skills do you have that can be used for more than just making money right now? Not only will you being doing your bit, by focussing on others you’ll help reduce your own stress levels.
When you feel hard done by, frustrated or angry put your hand on your heart and feel a big ‘thank you’ to all the frontline workers who are doing everything they can for us right now.
Reduce negative connections
Do you really need to check the news again? Yes it’s important to stay in the know right now, but it’s also incredibly draining for your mind and body (including your immune system) to be permanently fed fear. Choose one news provider and a time limit, book it in for the same time each day and stick to it. If you get the urge to check it outside of this time swap fear for love: pick up the phone and ask a friend or family member how they are.
Keep screen time in check
Improve your sleep (key for boosting our immune systems) by reducing screen time. Turn off your smart phone or computer at least an hour before bed and avoid switching it back on for at least an hour after waking up – your brain will thank you for some time out from the blue light.
Look after yourselves, and know we are with you!