• Eliane Haseth

How to Stay Grounded in Difficult Times

I’m feeling quite centered these last few months. I’ve gone through quite a rollercoaster during the last couple of years changing several countries, jobs, releasing a relationship, recovering physically and most recently, losing all my belongings in a . As a result of this I have become more practiced in dealing with uncertainty and disruptive change. As a result of the fire, I found myself crash landing at my parents on “dushi” Curaçao, my native rock in the Caribbean sea, for now. Things are coming together after all of this shedding. Not in the way and shapes I had planned and imagined. But in an organic way that makes sense to the heart. Ah, mystery that moves and guides us! These are times of boosting our immune systems, protecting more vulnerable people, isolating ourselves physically (not socially) and accommodating changes in the way we work, take care of family and loved ones. I see people overwhelmed with new questions, fear, anxiety, frustration, stress, grief and a desire to be more resilient. I see people expressing kindness. I see people coming together virtually, finding their tribes. The shift in consciousness is goosing up. It asks for us to stay centered. How to stay centered? To me, being centered means being grounded in the present moment. Our true power lies in the “now”. Not in the past, not in the future, but now. The following is a Zen based meditation practice that helps us come back to the present moment and embrace it. (1) Stop what you’re doing and bring your attention to the present moment. You could try feeling your body making contact with the chair, bed or sofa. You could also pay attention to your breathing. (2) Listen. Become aware of what is happening right now. What thoughts, emotions and sensations are arising now? Where is this happening in your body? (3) Allow. Could you say “yes” to these thoughts, emotions or sensations? You are not trying to change or fix them. If you feel discomfort, feel it. If there is pleasure, feel it. Can you say yes to the present moment? And if you can’t allow your present moment experience, can you allow yourself not to allow it? You can do this process at any point in time, even in extremely difficult circumstances. You could be washing the dishes, going for a walk or intensely grieving a loss. It does not matter what is happening. What matters is that you’re present and allow your present moment experience unconditionally. I found this to be instrumental in dealing with disruptive change. Your skills will deepen as you regularly practice this meditation, increasing your resilience.