It’s hard to let go of things even if they are not working. I remember trying to end a relationship with my less-than-stellar boyfriend in college. I knew he was not good for me, but I did not know who I would be without him. I stayed in the relationship longer than I should have because I feared to let go of what was familiar.
The Coronavirus is forcing us to face our two biggest fears: death and financial security. This global disruption is exposing our belief that money, position, and possessions will give us power and protection. The world has sputtered to a halt. It’s as if we’ve have been given a time out and sent to our rooms to take time to contemplate what it is we value.
By disconnecting from the chaos of the outside world, we see how interconnected we are. Our world economy and society are connected by supply chains, communication, technology, and travel. There is an intricate relationship between us all. Just as we eat the same foods, drink the same coffee, and wear the same clothes, we are all vulnerable to the same diseases.
Many of us learned denial was the easiest way to solve a problem, but as we have seen, denial can be deadly. We cannot heal our planet if we continue to ignore the signs of climate change. We watch Mother Earth struggle from smog and acid rain. We witness extreme heat waves, rising sea-levels, floods and droughts, intense hurricanes, and degraded air quality, yet we do nothing to change our ways. Our environment can no longer protect us from the negative impact of human behaviors. We need to take a long global pause to heal and rejuvenate and create a world that benefits us all, not just a select few.
Although it may feel like our lives have stopped, I believe something else is happening. Something quite powerful and truly remarkable is igniting, gestating, and restructuring in each of us individually as well as in our world. Sometimes we hang on to old mindsets because we don’t dare to create new ones, but if we want our world to change, we must change. We need to make significant shifts, make new choices, dream new images, and create new ways to live and heal the earth fully that moves all of us toward a state of health.
If we continue out of balance, we will not continue. The choices each of us makes points to the future. Hitting the reset button has helped us to focus more on the greater good, which is about cultivating the health and life of our global community. As we understand our interconnectedness, we must learn the lesson from this particular crisis. We cannot go back to our old ways. We need to develop sustainable economic development, a clean environment, and a sophisticated and capable system of global public health.