Ever since our ancestors developed language, we've shared stories to make meaning of our lives and the events in them. Through stories we pass on teachings to our children and community. Through stories we pass on history and our lineage. And perhaps most important of all, we share to connect about the experience of being human. We share and feel less alone, connecting through the woven fabric of our lives.
As I write, we're in the midst of a great collective story. The pandemic. The quarantine. Global mask wearing. Opening and shutting down again. We don't know the ending. But we can certainly say that it's a story of a planet confronting the reality of our interrelatedness. A story of physical separation and of loved ones passing alone. A story of confronting ourselves, our tendencies and fears, and what we do in the face of fear. A story of doubt, paranoia, grief - and also of inspiration, love and reaching out.
The uncertainty we're living reminds me of a not-so-long-ago time in my life of profound personal crisis and despair. Perhaps you've had a moment like this too?
Where you questioned everything?
Where you wondered how you could cope with this day, and then the next, and the next one after that?
What my own personal journey of crisis and transformation teaches me is that there is a method of navigating great disruption that can help each one of us. In my own life, my recovery from crisis back to my senses (and the ability to keep coming back to them) is continually helped by a lot of people along the way. I consistently need to reach out, listen to good counsel, and take responsibility for my life.
I need to remember to begin with the basics, to feed myself and my family regularly and put one foot in front of the other without thinking too far ahead (or behind). I need to surrender to the care and guidance of a power much greater than myself, and practice consistent awareness of the present moment, acceptance of what-is-so and affirming action.
And so I offer this to you - your personal story, or the one we are collectively in, could, perhaps, become a mythic story of how disruption or great change becomes the pivot point that reorients and clarifies your life's work and mission. It begins with awareness.
Where are you at this moment?
What are you needing for yourself?
What is the next most elegant step you can take right now?