How does this work? How do I work? Because I’m not sure I know who I am anymore!
That’s seemingly a daft statement because obviously I do know who I actually am. What I really mean is, in this new world where things are opening up, the ‘rules’ are murky, Covid cases are increasing and yet we are being given greater and greater freedom, I am feeling confused, agitated, at times anxious and I am not entirely certain I know how to behave. Is it OK to hug our family and friends? Is it OK to pass the salt at the dinner table? Do I pick up all our glasses from the waiter’s tray or let others take their own drink? Did I remember to sanitise my hands before I touched the steering wheel after I’ve been shopping?
We have chosen each other
and the edge of each others’ battles
the war is the same
if we lose
someday women’s blood will congeal
upon a dead planet
“Bullies don’t like to be bullied … “, someone said to me recently. If they’re not challenged or held to account though, they will continue to overpower the little people was my response (feeling like one of the little people in respect of this particular conversation). So, I began to ask myself, how is it possible to stand up, to challenge and simply to call out poor (at best) and horrendous (at worst) behaviours?
There are terrible things that continue to ravage our Earth in addition to, and because of, the Covid situation.
Poverty is increasing, economies are crumbling, coups are taking place, militias are acting, weird weather is squalling, horrific and inciteful words are being thrown, famine is striking, conflict is growing … we really do live in a mad, mad World. And like in the song lyrics – there are days when I’d like to ‘hide my head, I wanna drown my sorrow, no tomorrow, no tomorrow’ because I would dearly love the madness to stop.
Or, is it innate?
I’ve always thought I was pretty resilient, capable of working long hours with little sleep. Juggling multiple projects, constant travel, relearning how to use my iPhone after an update , facing major setbacks in my life and still carrying on with a smile and with energy.
I feel ashamed when I think of my judgment of others, in the past, who haven’t seemed resilient ... who have said they are too tired to engage, too weak to continue, too defeated to fight ... I always thought you simply needed mental resilience to overcome physical depletion.
Compassion comes from the Latin – compati – ‘suffer with’ and there is no doubt that at the moment we are all completely in the same boat and suffering in our own small or big ways.
So, it stands to reason that now is the time to show the greatest compassion we can to ourselves and everyone else – whether they be individuals, teams, groups, communities or society more generally.
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