Going all Sinéad over here?

Taking a departure from my Wellness Wednesday tradition for a mundane topic. It is actually related to wellness. But it’s about hair.

I am pretty sure I’m not the only person to be getting a little bushy up here, without my lovely Nicole Schreifels, the only person I trust with my hair. She always does a wonderful job and I walk away feeling cared for and sassy.

It is clear from the increasing numbers of COVID-19 cases that this “Stay At Home” situation is not going to end (safely) any time soon. The number of cases in the U.S. continues to climb rapidly. While I think Minnesota may fare better than some states, we must still use caution to protect vulnerable people.

Sinead discogs
Photo source link 

A dear yoga sister of mine told me Tuesday that she probably has the virus. She was advised by her tele-medicine practitioner that she could not get tested unless she went to ICU. With a severe and painful cough, fever, chills, and a loss of smell and taste, she was told to stay home and to self-quarantine for 7 days without the option of testing.

To me, this indicates a few things:

1) The actual numbers of infected people are MUCH higher than the confirmed cases reported (which include mostly hospitalized patients).

2) This is going to get worse before it gets better. How much worse? Nobody knows.

3) Despite many warnings from public health officials in recent decades that this type of event was probable, leaders ignored the warnings. They did not take time to understand the science to protect people. We need to listen to the experts, not the politicians.

4) Because infection rates increase in logarithmic progressions rather than linear ones, it is hard for us all to comprehend the nature of the spread. So, in a free society such as ours, we have difficulty complying with the kinds of orders that can slow the spread.

What does this have to do with hair? Well, wouldn’t it give a virus a lot less surface area to attach and inadvertently get into eyes or nose if I shave it all off? I mean, it’s short now already. As I washed my hands for the 20th+ time today, and brushed the hair out of my eyes, I considered a shampoo bottle and thought: wouldn’t be easier just to unburden myself further?

I don’t have the delicate features and symmetrical head shape of Sinead O’Connor, so I doubt I can pull it off personally. But in the interest of public health, why not at least ask the question?

Stay safe and well, friends.

cristy@meximinnesotana.com

 

Since change is a constant

I started out today writing about some hints for people who are managing people remotely during the COVID-19 situation. In my role as an operations manager for remote clinical research team, I learned a lot about managing distributed teams. My direct reports were in 5 different countries, so we were seldom all together EXCEPT via teleconferences.

And then: I got news that my friend’s mother is dying. She’s getting on a plane soon in hopes she can say goodbye in person if her Mom is released to hospice care. Family members cannot visit people in hospitals right now. Oh dear. Complicated.

So the earlier idea has been shelved for later. For now, I will readjust my plans for the week, so I can cat-sit for her.

That is okay. Haven’t we shown how capable we are this week of re-adjusting? That we are not in control of so many events in our lives? 

Change is a Constant

Change in our lives has always been constant. And yet we, as humans, cling to our ways of doing things, our comfortable routines. As a neurodiverse person I struggle to maintain routines, though I know that they help me stay sane on the average day.

Meditation has been a daily practice for over 3 years now.  Wow, am I ever glad I made that commitment. Journaling is also a daily practice for me, removing the “static” from my head and getting some distance from it by writing it out. Anything we can to do help manage our emotions right now is important.

I practice yoga 10-15 minutes most days to calm my nervous system. Some days I take whole hour class online through Tula Yoga & Wellness! I’m grateful they are making classes available via Zoom for those of us who want to stay connected and practicing. I’m also delighted that my NIA teacher Beth Giles is offering her NIA classes via Zoom so I can vary things up! Moving to music is a balm for the soul.

We need to take care of ourselves. This is not something I will sacrifice during this time. Self-care helps me show up for others. I have been able to support friends and family who are struggling via phone calls, walks, emails, etc. Connection is essential for health. What if we tried “virtual presencing” while we do our social distancing? No, it’s not the same. And yes, we need it.

We humans are inherently resilient. It is how our brains evolved thus far. We will get through this together. And our community may grow even stronger as a result.

Stay well, friends.

cristy@meximinnesotana.com

 

 

 

Unexpected blessings

I received some news at work yesterday which was surprising at first. It took me a few minutes to process it, and I am still deciding how to approach this news.

My emotions went from disbelief to amazement to sadness. Then I felt quiet recognition that this was not actually unexpected. My intuition had been nudging me here but I had been reluctant to fully see and acknowledge what I was seeing.

So my current emotion is relief. There is some uncertainty in the process of moving forward after big news. And there can be a delightful freedom in it, a chance for something new to burst forth.

Unexpected blessings

I thank my yoga training for allowing me to sit in the “heat” of any situation in my life and recognize it is here to teach me something. My resilience and resourcefulness come from within, and I am so grateful that I know this.

Over the weekend I received news about a yoga teaching opportunity which was energizing and exciting. After my “desk chair yoga” class in February I have been wondering what is next along that front, and some new options are emerging. I felt like I had been pushing, pushing, pushing on some projects that had felt stuck. And now I feel a sense of ease at understanding that planting seeds was more important, that growth and harvesting are a later part of this particular project.

Grateful for all the the wisdom I continue to receive.

***

cristy@meximinnesotana.com

 

 

 

Saucha – lightening the load

This past weekend, I spent time on another round of de-cluttering, since it was cold and snowy. Though Marie Kondo claims that one can tidy in a one-time special event for a period of a few weeks or months, I believe it is more of an annual or seasonal ritual for me at minimum.

January is a great time to do this. After the holidays, we have accumulated more things. Some of those things we might use; other things we might want to gratefully pass them along to someone else via donation. The purpose of those things was to be received, and to convey care from the giver. Possessing them for longer than needed creates an unnecessary burden.

Saucha - lightening the load

For me, what accumulates is usually clothing and books. Oh, and since I did not entirely finish the “komono” clearing before (random odds and ends) I am still working through that. So many decisions!

Last month my yoga book club group focused on Saucha,or purity, the first of the 5 Niyamas, observances that make up part of the ethical guidelines. Part of this practice is to purify our bodies through healthy food and exercise. Another part of it involves taking care of the space around us, so we are not weighed down by excess possessions.

After dropping off some bags of clothing and shoes I no longer wear, a few household items and a bag of books, I felt immediately lighter. I felt less weighed down, buoyed by fresh energy after letting go of these items that were encroaching upon my space. I still have work to complete. But this flying start was such a nice reminder of the boost that comes from Outer Order (with credit to Gretchen Rubin, who has also inspired me this month via Audible).

Where might you purify your body, your space, or your thoughts? You might be amazed at the energy that’s released by letting go.

***

cristy@meximinnesotana.com