How to let go of nightmares during COVID-19 health crisis

I flew into China with my husband. There were two people there – a man and a woman who were infected with COVID-19. Those same two people tried to infect me and my husband. It turns out they were quarantined in China for over two weeks. They were so lonely from not being around any other English speaking-people, and wanted us to join them in their sickness at the same quarantine facility.

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That’s a snippet of a nightmare I had while on vacation in Barcelona a few weeks ago. It was such a vivid dream.  It seemed so real. I woke up in an incredibly uneasy state of mind. I was afraid. I actually remained that way for the bigger part of my morning. 

Fast forward to a week later. My psychotherapist and I were analyzing my dream trying to uncover meaning or hidden messages that are coming from my unconscious mind: sometimes our mind tells us something through our dreams. In my session, I discovered that all the characters in my dream represented parts of me in the context of my life. The man in my dream only wanted me to be safe, the woman was seeking my company and my husband was acting out of safety and concern for my well-being too.  There was even a dirty and rusty old Jeep sitting alongside of the road that looked like it had been ignored and certainly not used for any adventurous road trips in a while. That was also a part of me that I didn’t explore fully. I was able to relate that vision in my dream and those emotions of being so scared and afraid to a time in my life when I was about six years old.  

Traumatic or intense experiences that happen to us as kids in many cases, can cause us to split into pieces emotionally.  Those pieces of us can seemingly be at odds with each other as we go through life. I believe that each one of those individual emotional sides of us want us to be happy and content.  I also consider they make up most of our inner child. As an adult, when I bring any one of my struggling inner pieces into focus and give her (my inner child) the resource she’s been lacking such as love or comfort, I find peace because she received those things she was craving.  As a result, I can become more congruent and much happier and fulfilled, because my inner child is happy. 

Most of us ignore our inner child or don’t understand that connecting with and nurturing that little boy or little girl inside of us can really help us to reconnect with some of the reasons why our fears, apprehensions, and sources of unhappiness exist today.  We simply grow up letting Life take over and potentially end up miserable. We don’t even remember what brings us joy. What ignites our inner light. 

When we are in the middle of trying times and there’s uncertainty in our world or the world around us, we become less patient with each other. We tend to fight with one another or blame one another with the goal of finding fault in the other person or outside circumstances.  We sometimes go into retreat mode trying to protect ourselves from the “hostile” World. When in fact, during these trying times we should be uniting with one another, elevating each other, and digging deep inside to find our inner LOVE, sense of CALM, and INNER PEACE. When we operate in that space we can create what we want to see in the world, which for me is a peaceful, united and loving World. 

When we think of worst-case scenarios, like COVID-19, or perhaps you are already really sick from something else and you stay focused on that fact, the Universe only hears suffering and fear, which means we will attract the worst-case scenarios. What could we do when we are in that negative mind space or in full on panic mode?  

This is what I do that helps me stay grounded and calm:  First, stop what you are doing and look at your hand. Examine all the little lines and the intricacies of those little lines.  Do only that for a few minutes straight. You could also focus on one object around you for example a couch, a table, a flower or a lamp. Be sure to stay neutral in your thinking about the object. Try not to attach meaning to the object like “dirty couch.”  That’s distracting and can keep you from being focused and present with the object. We do not want to go there. 

Once you get present with the gorgeous “mapping” of your hand or the object, tune into your feelings inside and focus on the sensations of your feet on the ground, feel how firm or soft the cushion you are sitting on, feel the softness of your shirt, sweat pants. Imagine a rainbow coming out of your nose as you breathe making a half circle from your nose to the belly button. Raise your belly on the inhale and suck the belly in on the exhale. Sit this way breathing a few more minutes. This guided process will allow you to connect to your higher self, your intuition, your heart, your breathing, your internal guidance system and can be very effective in bringing you a sense of calm and inner peace. 

When we act or make decisions out of LOVE, we strengthen the connection with ourselves and with others. We are soothing our collective unconscious by controlling what we can – our own mind. We are also strengthening our immune system by calming our nervous system. 

Humans have such an incredible capacity for love, compassion, greatness and unity. Let’s collectively bring the best out of one another by bringing the best out of ourselves first. 

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