a.k.a.: Avoiding Separation
My last post, while emphasizing our personal healing potential, also noted the importance of maintaining (if not gaining) connections in this time of physical separation.
I wanted to expand on that beyond the healing meditation and reflective ideas for energetic connections that I provided, into more "physical" -or rather- social connections.
I've seen some references replacing the term 'social distancing' with 'physical distancing', which I like... we have the ability to be socially connected despite staying physically apart. (Similarly, we are all energetically connected across any space and time, so this is a wonderful aspect of Reiki and other Energy Modalities that I'm excited to discuss in the future as well! ...to be continued.)
Consider for a moment who you've connected with in the last 24 hours. How does this list compare to an average day last year? I've found most of the people I have been talking to are reaching our more regularly: checking in with their family and friends on a more consistent basis than they used to. Certainly, we have been prompted by a trying situation in unusual times, but that doesn't discount the impact of this change.
In the past I personally *saw* more people, superficially connecting, and I realize I was still affected by those minor interactions, but I largely took them for granted. This new desire to check-in, to say "hi", to reach out and to be social feels deeper. There is more effort and intentionality, despite the stark realization that this technological access has been at my fingertips for many years.
This evening I did a video chat with a couple friends who moved out of state last month. I knew I'd miss them and our regular gatherings. We had plans of visiting back and forth, but the idea to video chat hadn't crossed my mind until recently. It was so simple and so fulfilling - seeing them in a group setting was a much greater form of connection than texts, phone calls and emails. The realization they could be next door and this would still work was incredible. We could still *see* each other, watching expressions and body language... and I found that link to mean so much.
So the little friendly "hello's" in my life are more consistent; the concerned, compassionate and inquisitive, "how's your health?" / "do you have all you need?" heart-driven check-in's are more consistent; and now, settling into this adjusted routine of being solely at home, the "let's get together for a general catch-up" virtual gatherings are also becoming normal and consistent. For me, they're even more frequent than the times I'd go out to see people. It's so easy!
Whether you have a phone, tablet or laptop you can take a step beyond commonplace texting and you can video chat with those for whom you care.
Taking it further, as we're all innovating, there are far more groups of every type, field, and fashion gathering in this way. You can do live yoga, group meditations, online gaming and even support groups. Look for what you love, what you might be missing, and see who may be offering it right now. You no longer have to worry if your favorite type of yoga is an easy commute away - now you can find your perfect teacher even if they're living across the country, across the world! Exceptionally, many of the kind hearts creating these socially-connecting opportunities for all of our enrichment right now, are doing so for free! While many internet providers are giving away extra data. Just ask!
Overall I think these unplanned changes are really opening our eyes and our minds to so many new ways of thinking: it's when a challenge occurs that we see outside the box and have radical, transformative ideas! This is such a great exercise in collective creativity, collaboration, and it is so good for our minds to figure out ways to do something different.
Neuroplacticity is the ability for our minds to change, but we are definitely creatures of habit. We often won't find a new way of doing things if we don't have to. Yet, we all have this ability, all through our lives. Our brain literally strengthens and grows its own internal connections based on repetition - each path that is reinforced grows stronger, and unused paths recede. You can think of it like a path in the woods: In uncharted territory the first way-maker will have to clear the brush and find a way. As more travelers access the path it becomes clearer, and with use over time it is well marked. If the path isn't used it becomes overgrown again. When you learn new things and have new experiences you are expanding and enhancing your mind!
So these new ideas for connection (and so many other forms of problem solving) are requiring a vast amount of critical thinking, and the creation of new paths - all over the world. Right now our collective consciousness is diving into unknown waters and uncovering discoveries we didn't even think to look for, before.
Take your turn. Make your mark. Ask what you want and need to better feel socially connected and fulfilled, and give yourself time to ponder on how you might accomplish it. Have a brainstorm session and jot down every single funky, crazy, off-the-wall and imaginative idea that comes to mind. Tap into this collective solving energy we're all using to better ourselves and the world.
Give yourself the gift of connection. It is possible.
Uncharted, untrodden and fresh, connection is still at our fingertips.