For the past several months, I’ve been focusing on the word “trust.” This all began during a yoga retreat in Chacala, Mexico. After an incredible week of yoga, meditation, and gemstone healing, we each received a wish bracelet. When this brown string was tied around our wrist, we were told to make a wish, learning that when the bracelet naturally fell off, our wish would be fulfilled. I bet you can guess what my wish was.
Trust has always been difficult for me. If given the option, I’d tightly hold the reigns and be in charge instead of putting my trust elsewhere. No doubt this controlling tendency has kept me safe, but it’s also prevented me from experiencing certain aspects of life – some beautiful, some not so. I knew that not trusting had been limiting, preventing a great deal of personal growth. That is why, when asked to pick one wish, I chose to trust. Because for me to truly develop into the person I hope to become, I must let go of fear and step out of my comfort zone – I must learn to trust.
Over the past five months, centering my thoughts on trust has served me well, helping me in both anticipated and unexpected ways. It certainly supported me when publishing my first book. And it assisted me with marketing this novel, not a particular strength of mine. But that’s not all. Learning to trust has allowed me to lighten my grip on life, accepting more and controlling less. In the process I’m experiencing more than ever before. I’m feeling at a deeper level, and I’m becoming open to so much more.
And now, as I write this blog on a Sunday afternoon, I’m wondering if this concept I’ve been embracing since November has an even greater purpose than I imagined. What if it wasn’t just meant to enrich my life? What if it was helping me prepare for something much bigger?
In this current pandemic environment, like everyone else, I sift through news articles, keep myself up to date with the growing statistics, and practice social distancing. I also try to maintain a strong immunity as well as a healthy attitude. I do my best to take care of my family and myself, cooking wholesome meals, frequently cleaning surfaces, and keeping busy. That’s all I can do. The rest falls into the trust category.
But what does “the trust category” really mean? Is this a blind trust I’m referencing, where we bury our heads in the sand and hope everything goes back to normal, quickly? Or could there be more to this concept?
The trust I’m referring to is a knowing trust that we are strong, that we will weather this storm, and that we are each equipped to do what we must. We are learning tremendous lessons about ourselves, how we react under stress, and the various ways we process our fears. We watch as our family, friends, neighbors, and strangers experience this growing uncertainty. Some rise to great heights, becoming leaders in their own right. Yet, others struggle just to tread water.
People react to crisis in various ways. While the present situation is bringing out the best in some, for others, well, their fear controls them. Now, more than ever, it is important to refrain from judging those who are having a hard time with this pandemic. People exhibit fear in different ways, just as we all express loss in our own fashion. Remember, very little that others say or do is about us… it is all about them and what they are experiencing, feeling, or worrying about. So, if someone reacts in a way that troubles you, instead of judging them or getting angry, pause and consider whether their actions are fear-based. Most likely they are.
Here is where we are called to step up. Try to accept – to trust – that we are all doing our best. It’s just that my best might not look like yours. When someone is in a reactive state, instead of criticizing them, try showing compassion. Ask how you can help. Maybe they are terrified about getting sick, losing their job, or experiencing financial failure. Or perhaps, they just need to vent to another human being. All of this togetherness (for families who have young or adult kids at home) or isolation (for those shut off from their daily interactions) can cause intense and unfamiliar feelings. And on top of experiencing new uncertainties and fears, we are all out of our normal routines. That in itself can cause stress.
Now is the time for us to come together, support one another, be forgiving, and show compassion. Smile as you walk by someone in the park. Share an uplifting comment. Call, text, or email a friend you haven’t seen for some time – just to let them know you care.
Even though it’s been five months since that string bracelet with a small metal circle was tied on my wrist, it continues to remind me of the wish I made in a beautiful yoga studio, surrounded by special people, as the sun set over the Pacific Ocean. My bracelet has not yet fallen off, so I know I’m still in the process of making my wish come true.
Yet, while I wait for the brown string to naturally break, there are certain truths that I already implicitly trust… When we elevate ourselves, those around us elevate as well. If we raise our own vibration, life will not only brighten for us, but also for our family and friends. And if we are able to suspend judgment and instead invite compassion into our life, we are better equipped to help those in need. Can you imagine the impact that practicing these truths could have, especially now? Trusting in the best version of ourselves helps us lift others and offer loving compassion to those in need. Now, more than ever, when control is impossible, we all need to trust. Oh, and I’ll let you know when the bracelet finally falls off.