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Five Ways to Practice Courage in Uncertain Times

Five ways to stoke your courage in service alongside self-preservation in this time.

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Whether you feel the stress and anxiety of these times, hold concerns about your personal safety or that of your family, fear potential loss (of any kind), or just get overwhelmed by it all, I feel you and wanted to drop into your day to share a few ways we can ground ourselves together in this turbulent time.

I invite you to pause the scurry and hurry of the day and take a few long, deep breaths as you continue reading. Here’s to a collective exhale for a moment together.

FIVE KEY WAYS TO STOKE YOUR COURAGE RIGHT NOW

WASH YOUR HANDS, THEN OPEN THEM. Washing our hands is commonplace but it bears repeating that washing them well matters. Make a ritual out of it by offering a mantra or prayer every time you hang out with the soap and water. Practice physical and spiritual hygiene at the same time! Secondly, practice curbing the criticism by opening your hands to new ways of living, working, connecting, and taking care of yourself and others. Open your hands to change. Keep in mind that for some, this pandemic means a change of plans. For most, this means a change of life. 

PRACTICE SCROLL COURAGE. Take time to tune in to what really matters to you. Leverage the internet & social media for connection as much as access to information. Use your scroll time to engage in a respectful, thoughtful, inclusive ways. We aren’t in need of more fear-mongering so practicing scroll courage—how we connect and contribute—matters. Whether we like it or not, we’re all in this together. We have a global opportunity for kindness, truth, and true connection to go viral too. 

TRADE IN MANAGING YOUR FEELINGS FOR ACTUALLY FEELING THEM. Get curious about your feelings. Allow them to surface instead of trying to diminish or deny them. Feeling our feelings helps us awaken; to become more present to the unfolding of life instead of trying to manage the uncertainties of life. Be with yourself just as you would hold empathetic space for a close friend. Observe, get curious, and feel your way through. Our strength is forged by feeling rather than suppressing. When we actually feel what we feel, we lower our blood pressure, reduce our anxiety, sharpen our perspective, and boost our energy. Feel, my friend. It is the way through. 

CONNECT & SERVE. Small moments create big ripples. As social distancing takes center stage, let’s also take the time to call, text, email, and FaceTime our people. Schedule morning coffee, work lunches, happy hours, and social activities virtually. Attend meet-ups to stay engaged and vigilant at the same time. Help a neighbor, stranger, or friend in need.

Support the small businesses and organizations that matter to you by investing in a product or service you’ve had your eye on for awhile. Make a donation—or donate your tickets—to the organizations that host events you love to attend. If you can, buy your hand soap from local suppliers who are scrambling for next month’s rent. Breathe deeply and connect with yourself and what you really, really need and want during this time too. 

REMEMBER THAT COURAGE IS CONTAGIOUS TOO. Every time we choose the courageous response, extend the hand to our neighbors rather than close it, give rather than hoard, get honest rather than hostile, we rise above the fear and cynicism. Life is not ‘every human for themselves,’ even when it feels like it. If there is any answer in all of this, it’s more love and courage.

The courage to lead our lives, the courage to speak truth to power, the courage to support those in need, the courage to guide our children and protect our elders, the courage to educate ourselves, and the courage to practice in real time what we profess to believe. 

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