There’s nothing like a global pandemic to remind you of how interdependent we are on a global scale! You’ve likely heard of the butterfly theory that suggests how the flapping of a butterfly’s wings can impact the weather thousands of miles away. In an April 14, 2020 Fast Company article by Parag Khanna and Karan Khemka, they reinforce this concept even further, with sobering predictions for the future by saying, “In chaos theory, the butterfly effect describes a small change that can have massive, unpredictable consequences. An insect flaps its wings and, weeks later, causes a tornado. The coronavirus is more like an earthquake, with aftershocks that will permanently reshape the world.” If there ever was a time to take our heads out of the sand and realize that we are indeed connected, now is the time!
What does it mean to be part of a community? For some, it’s about coaching a youth sports team or volunteering with a service club. For others it’s about lending a hand to a neighbour. And for many, it’s about supporting the local economy by working in and buying local. But at the end of the day, it’s about belonging to a place where we can feel safe, trusting that when in need, the community will have our back. Over the past several weeks I’ve seen many gestures of community at its finest. Kindness, generosity of spirit, and neighbours helping neighbours. I’ve seen staff at local businesses working hard to ensure we have groceries and other essential services. And I’ve seen dedicated essential workers at hospitals and charities serving the needs of our most vulnerable residents. That’s how a community shows it’s accountable to everyone.
Who are the friends and family members who you most depend on? The ones you know will keep their promises. The people who hold themselves accountable for their actions. The ones who are authentic? Now ask yourself the same question. Are you someone who people in your sacred circle can trust? Being accountable to others is probably more important now than ever before. We need to be able to trust each other to be honest if we’re not feeling well so that everyone in our sacred circle is protected. We need to be able to trust that what someone says is truthful and that those closest to us have our best interest in mind. In today’s reality of COVID, accountability is everything.
Do you sometimes feel that you’re being selfish if you take time to practice self-care? Do you think that the needs of others should take precedent? Do you feel that you’re not worthy of attention? In actuality, the opposite is true. Self-care is about self-respect. And it’s the starting place for taking personal responsibility for what happens in your life. It’s about knowing that only you can create your own reality and that you are 100 percent accountable for your thoughts and deeds - nobody else. And if you don’t like the reality you have created, you are the only one who can change it. Time to stop feeling like a victim. You’re not doing anyone any good if you feel that way.
Imagination is a powerful tool. It’s the juice that enabled Michelangelo to see what others couldn’t. It’s also the starting place for creation. You need to be able to step outside the confines of your perceived reality to envision something new or different. And once you have that firmly in your mind, then like Michelangelo did when he carved his many masterpieces, you can start from the end. You see, he saw the finished carving first in his imagination. Then he allowed it to materialize. That’s power. The good news is we all have been given that same power. We just have to sharpen our creative muscle by spending more time dreaming. This is an eloquent poem by the English poet, Samuel Taylor Coleridge that poses a thought-provoking question about the power of imagination. I was first introduced to this poem in Wayne Dyer’s book Wisdom of the Ages.
If you’re a creative rebel and you’re feeling sort of stuck right now with all the distractions and upheaval, perhaps today’s blog can help. I too can let the noise and confusion of the world around me interfere with my need to express myself through my creative passion of writing. And sometimes there’s just too much inner clutter that needs to be purged so that I can come back into balance and the words will flow more freely once again. Sound familiar? If you’re already familiar with chakra work, you know that the 2nd chakra or the sacral chakra as it is known, is the energy centre attributed to sexuality, sensuality, fertility, creative life force and your joy for living. It’s really the centre of feminine energy and the foundation for new beginnings, which is the fundamental basis of creativity.
Taking a risk these days when everything seems so upside down, seems like the most impractical and irresponsible thing to do. But what if taking a risk was actually the safest thing you could do? This is what I mean. Let’s face facts. Life is never going to be the way it was before the pandemic. In fact I’m beginning to think that we will all look at this as a dividing point in time. I would call it PRE-COVID and POST-COVID. And trust me, they are going to be fundamentally different. So if you agree with my prediction, then why not create the reality you want from a position of intention as opposed to from a place of victimhood. But that will take creative courage. It will mean becoming a creative rebel. In my May newsletter Joy Matters, I included the chapter from my book Being Joy™ called Be Creative in which I relayed the story of how I became a creative rebel and why I think it’s important to be one. So what is a creative rebel and how do you know if you are one?
Years ago when I was struggling with some physical health challenges, I went to see a Japanese chiropractor who also performed laser acupuncture. While she was providing her treatment, she asked me what I did for a living and whether or not I felt fulfilled. She must have sensed that I was stressed. I explained that I felt adrift and really didn’t have a clear sense of purpose. I had just come through a serious illness, had temporarily lost my vision and was trying to figure out what to do with the rest of my life. This is what she said. “What did you like to do when you were a little girl?” Without even a moment to think, I knew the answer. “I really liked to write. I made up stories and even wrote some poems when I became a teenager.” I’ll never forget what she said next: “Then go do that.”
Do you feel like your mind has been stretched to the limit by what we’re collectively experiencing these days? Do you feel sometimes like the world is standing still and other days like it’s moving out of control? Are you having difficulty coping with all the unknowns? Well, I’m going to ask you to stretch your mind a little bit further. You’ll be glad you did. When you stretch your mind, you stretch your perspective. And when you experience new ways of operating or when you allow new information to percolate and be absorbed, you actually change. You are not the same person as you were before the new information or experience. You’ve evolved.
What’s one of the best ways to rid yourself of anxiety and worry? Something that can help boost your immune system. Something you can safely share with anyone. A method of intentional distraction? You guessed it. Humour. And I’m a big fan. Today, I’m sharing a list of 36 of my favourite feel-good, funny, quirky movies to help you get through this great big curveball we’ve all been thrown. I’ve also included an excerpt from my book that tells the story of how humour healed a famous doctor from a severe inflammatory disease.