letting go of control by hannah stone
by victoria larkins
Letting Go of Control ⌇A narrative piece dealing with the COVID-19 outbreak by Sankalpa model Hannah Stone
There is not a great deal any of us can control in the world right now.
Up until last week, I had direction and presence in my life. Newly single and feeling as confident as ever, I was excited to move to the West coast after college. I dreamt each night about running on the Southern California sand, continuing my education at a new job, and anxiously (the good kind of jitters) awaited a new community of friends. I knew the steps I needed to take to start my journey after graduation – that was until life threw me, us, a curve ball.
Amid the Corona virus pandemic, classes were cancelled, my best friends fled the state to be with their families, and just like that my college days were over. The abruptness of the situation hit me like a train. The only way I knew how to release my emotion was to flee the situation. I thought of every single way to get out of my house as fast as I could, Googling: Skyscanner tickets to Hawaii, Top 5 national parks to see before you die, and Is it safe to travel to Mexico right now?
Whenever disaster strikes in my life, the easiest way out of the situation is to do something that will distract me from reality. In this case, I had no choice but to stay put. I have officially hit quarantine day five (yippee! – NOT). Over the last several days of binge watching Netflix shows, repeatedly taking showers even though I haven’t stepped foot outside, reorganizing my drawers, eating 10,000 calories, sending Corona virus articles to my group chat, and asking myself “now what?”; I paused to take a birds-eye view of my life.
It is so easy to get caught up in the panic of others and allow that to feed our deepest fears. So, I went on a journey to reset my intention to feel more connected to my inner thoughts and feelings. While I am faced with change, illness, and death; I am choosing to find stillness. When the frenzy of our daily life comes to a grinding halt, we have the rare opportunity to suddenly face the true colors of our reality. Right now, literally, is a time to pause and breathe, to center ourselves, and become more connected to where we are headed and where we want to go.
The power of our attitude towards life and ourselves can change by simply shifting our perspective. I am turning my outlook towards gratitude and feeling more connected to myself, my emotions, and my future. I am finding gratitude for my health and the simple act of being or feeling alive. I am taking moments throughout my day to reconnect to this check-in, even while in hibernation mode.
Meditating as soon as I wake up to clear my mind of negative thoughts, taking 30-minutes to get through my skincare routine to thank my body for fighting off illness, and dancing my ass off to old Jane Fonda videos has shifted my perspective on the world right now.
Gratitude is one of the most-studied concepts in positive psychology research and studies prove that when you practice connecting with yourself, your intention, there is a strong effect on your overall happiness and emotional plane.
‘If we were not so single-minded about keeping our lives moving, and for once could do nothing, perhaps a huge silence might interrupt this sadness of never understanding ourselves with death. Perhaps the earth can teach us as when everything seems dead and later proves to be alive’
– From Keeping Quiet by Pablo Neruda