Speaking of HealthCelery: Not just for veggie traysJune 02, 2023
Speaking of HealthHow mindfulness meditation improves mental healthJune 01, 2023
Speaking of HealthTips for making safety part of your summer funMay 31, 2023
COVID-19 and spiritual life: Living one day at a time
During the COVID-19 pandemic, all of us have been lifted into a new way of living our day. Many of us who were so busy before have been slowed by an extremely small organism with a huge amount of power.
As we work to figure out how to reorganize our life, each day presents a new set of rules and changes that may give us a reason to pause. There is more uncertainty and a feeling of being out of control.
And yet, each day is unique. There still are blessings in each day, like the sun rising, birds singing, the birth of a new baby and snow turning to rain to provide water for spring plants.
People are helping people. Many are reintroducing themselves to the most precious unit of family. Others are talking to people they have not visited in months.
It's what we could term a rebirth or renewal. It is a discovery for many that each day is precious and finite. It is a sequestered chance to slow down.
These times have given many of us a different lens with which to see the world and realize that each day is precious. Time that was once taken for granted now is seriously reconsidered. There now are rules and cautions that affect us all.
Change your focus
One way to forge ahead with a clearer mental capacity is to focus on the current day ahead ― not all of the days to come. Viewing our time as a single day gives us a chance to absorb and manage the daily demands. As the world continues to slow down, we can assess how the moments reflect the delicate balance of who we are. Our days take on a different meaning.
When we focus on the past day and what was, there is a feeling of powerlessness with what we may not have accomplished. We could feel depressed and frustrated.
When we focus on too many days ahead, it is a formula for becoming overwhelmed and making decisions with little information or in an untimely manner. Again, frustration and anxiety can occur. Thoughts of the unknown can bring emotional turmoil and uncertainty of how we will maintain or adapt to the new.
When we live one day at a time, we put energy into knowing that a divine force guides us. We can breathe and reason, and manage our lives in a more orderly fashion. This is the day that has been made for us, and we can choose how we will be within that day. We can take time to see the blessings and recognize new opportunities in the quietness.
We can live intentionally, knowing that our mercies are new each day and that our needs will be met. Being spiritually intent gives hope. We can be a light to others who need hope. We can offer support to those who are depressed or fearful.
Our stress lowers when we give our days ahead to a spiritual presence that will be with us ― one that never leaves. Leaning into one's faith allows room for building a stronger sense of peace.
Rediscovering who you are, and knowing that you have been given gifts and talents that can be used, gives purpose. Find that purpose, give it strength one day at a time, and discover a spiritual awakening and divine love that will overpower any real or imagined quarantine we will experience.
Take advantage of this unique time away from the daily routine. Glean the wisdom of connecting with your spiritual source in prayer and meditation. See blessings that were previously unseen and know that mercies are new each day.
Chaplain Shar Burgess, is a board-eligible, clinically-trained chaplain in New Prague and Waseca, Minnesota.