While there’s some irony in going inward at the start of spring, traditionally an outward looking time of year (on this hemisphere), there’s a lot we can do to maximise Spring Equinox / Ostara energies while home alone (or with the people we live with).
I’ve already done what I did at Christmas, thinking that all the ‘enforced down time’ would be a great time to finish a couple of book proposals I’ve been working on for ages, finish unpacking from my last move last August, finish the bits in the house that I want to finish, fixing the fence from Storm Ciara and sorting loads of other bits in the garden, batch cooking so much that I never even want to have Chilli Heatwave Doritos or bourbon biscuits for dinner again…
So I’m taking some pressure of myself AND working through The List.
In fact, I’ve turned The List into a mindmap and now into a jar.
You can use a small bag, box, jar – whatever appeals.
None of us know how long this social distancing / self isolation will last.
Hopefully, Covid 19 will soon be a thing of the past as we humans remember how to put the greater good first, stay home as much as possible and support our communities to aid recovery.
But I’ve noticed that not knowing has made a difference to my motivation levels.
Normally, I give myself a time frame for anything I’m doing, even if it’s fairly flexible.
Because we simply don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow let alone next week, the jar idea appeals because it honours the uncertainty.
I’ve done this with self care ideas for decades but this is now for chores and projects – writing each down on a small piece of paper, estimating the amount of time it will take and then, when I have some time, energy and head space, I can randomly pull one out and tackle that project.
I’ve no intention of forcing myself to do something that makes my heart sink when I draw it but that, too (pick again! It’s your jar), will be information.
And by simply noting each task down and popping it into the jar, I can take some pressure off myself in terms of wanting to have done everything already.
Feel free to adopt any or all of this plan for your own projects and chores.
In terms of the Spring Equinox energy, a lot of my projects relate to getting more grounded and settled in my new home.
Talking to others, I know lots of people seem to be going back to basics.
It’s a wonderful time to take stock of our lives. To not only spring clean physically but metaphorically.
These grounding, getting organised, cleaning, gardening, cookery type projects are all ways in which we can rebalance the base chakra, too.
Covering the feet all the way up to the very base of the spine, the base chakra is connected with safety and security.
With people fearing for their and loved ones’ lives as well as so many job losses already (if you’re affected and my approach appeals, you might want to get in touch), it’s a really healthy way to strengthen this base chakra energy.
What items don’t we need any more? Maybe we can donate some to people who DO need them?
What habits, beliefs and behaviours are we ready to release?
It occurred to me today that this pandemic affecting so much of the Western world, proving that we CAN mobilise and make enormous lifestyle changes when we need to, is in some ways making us more community focused.
When this is over, maybe we can put the same will into living more sustainably to better support our own life support system, the earth.
Perhaps we can do more to make the whole world a fairer, safer place for all earth’s inhabitants.
I keep hearing the phrase, ‘We not me’.
It’s a shift from the prevailing mainstream attitudes since the 1980s about greed being good.
I don’t know anyone who is applauding the people who’ve been so driven by fear that they’ve been stockpiling, depriving others of basics.
Maybe we’ll see a lasting shift towards caring for others. Maybe I’m deluding myself.
But initiatives like Chef Aid Donegal, featured on Friday’s RTE News, are still inspiring me.
One of the chefs involved (cooking and donating food to those in need, delivered by the Garda (Irish police)), Tim Twomey said, ‘We’re in it for the long haul. Sure, what else would we be doing? Sitting in the house driving ourselves nuts?’
This virus is helping people connect with a sense of purpose and meaning.
Our fellow humans really are finding ways to reach out while staying in.
In terms of our own homes, if we’re fortunate enough to have a garden (this is the first place I’ve ever had my own garden and it couldn’t have come at a better time. But years spent in tiny studio flats mean I have huge empathy for people feeling cooped up), it’s a wonderful time of year to focus on new growth.
To plant the seeds (literally in the garden and metaphorically by planning and working on new projects) for the future.
When so much has been shut down and cancelled, we can keep hope ever present by reminding ourselves of the world we want to return to and taking some time to prepare ourselves.
Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, stay / get well and be safe.