Our current reality is looking very different from the world we were living in a month ago, and I imagine your life has been turned on its head. Mine certainly has!
What are you needing right now?
Are you able to ask for what you want and need during these turbulent times? For many of us, asking for what we want was a challenge long before this crisis hit, and I imagine this has been exacerbated in recent weeks as past traumas flair up, there is an air of fear and uncertainty, and we are all scrambling to meet the basic needs for the security of ourselves, our families and loved ones. (For more on understanding trauma, read this post.)
As I come face to face with my own anxiety, I have been asking myself – what tools can I reach for in these uncertain times? And how can I support others at this time? And what came to me is the importance of receiving – of being able to fill myself up. You might be asking yourself, but there is so much need in the world right now, how can I possibly focus on myself?
This is precisely why it is so important that each of us has the tools to fill ourselves up – to ask for what we want and need, which includes finding creative ways to meet our own needs – so that we are resourced enough to lend a helping hand wherever it is needed. And I have no doubt that our services are needed in every community right now.
One of the Wheel of Consent teachings that I would like to offer you now as a tool for connecting to yourself and your needs in this moment is a teaching on choice and empowerment – and this for me is the core of this work. I invite you to take a few minutes right now and check in with yourself.
Take Time to Notice
The first step is to NOTICE. As life slows down all around us, it’s the perfect time to slow down and notice what is happening in your internal world.
What are you noticing in your body? This might be at the level of sensation – a tightness in your chest, contraction in your belly, buzzing in your head…Or you might notice emotions arising – maybe there is fear, anger, grief, or joy…Or you might notice you are caught up in your thoughts. Whatever you find, see if you can observe your body, your emotions and thoughts and be with whatever is there.
As you become aware of what is present, notice if there are any needs or desires present. You might notice a desire for movement, or to receive some nurturing touch, or a desire to share your thoughts with an empathetic listener, or simply to be still and breathe. What sounds wonderful and supportive to you right now?
Trust the Information
The second step is to TRUST the information your body is giving you. It might sound boring or unreasonable or too much. Notice any judgments and see if you can let them go.
The third step is to VALUE it. What you want/need matters. And more importantly, you matter.
Communicate Your Needs
The fourth step is to COMMUNICATE your needs. This might be a conversation you have with yourself – how can you give yourself what you want/need in this moment? Or this might be a conversation with someone else – making a request for what you want. This might be asking someone you are isolating with, or making a call to a friend.
Receive the Gift
The fifth step is to allow yourself to RECEIVE. Drink in the nourishment of this gift. It’s vulnerable to receive, and we are living in a time of collective vulnerability.
So what are YOU needing right now and how can you get those needs met? Enjoy this time of slowing down and see how much you can tune into the needs of your body – physical, mental, emotional or spiritual. What you want matters.
From this place, you will be more resourced to offer your services to those in need – whether that is children, loved ones or members of your community.
Please share in the comments below what you are needing at this time and how you are resourcing yourself.
Be safe. Be well. And please stay connected.
This blog post was originally posted on the School of Consent website April 6, 2020