In the sweetest irony of life, I decided to talk about space, my recent experiences with taking space, and why I believed it to be so important, a few weeks ago. I had some poignant life experiences that showed me the benefit of taking space, and as you know by now, I always share the life lessons presented to me. So here I sit, alone in my apartment, writing on this topic, as I am taking physical space from society due to the Coronavirus, and its sudden spread in the United States. So space, and its importance, is quite the hot topic in many ways this week!
First, though, let’s talk about the space that I had planned to write about. It’s become increasingly apparent that when presented with a crossroads, a difficult decision, or an anxiety producing circumstance, space always provides the clarity, the ease, and the peace to move forward.
You know those moments where you’re having a heated conversation, and you follow your knee-jerk reaction to clap back, rather than breathe and collect yourself, and you say something you really regret? Or you say something that unnecessarily escalates the situation? Or the times when you feel incredibly anxious about what to do or where to go, and you think that making a decision quickly will help, but you end up hastily choosing something that’s not exactly in your best interest?
The past few weeks I’ve had a handful of these kinds of life experiences, and in some of them, I reacted too quickly, I said the emotionally charged thing, rather than the rational one, and I had to suffer the consequences of it. Subsequently, I also had those moments, where I was aware enough to take the space, to breathe, to regroup, to step away, and to see the situation from a different perspective. I experienced so much grace, clarity and peace of mind, because I took that space.
Space, in any circumstance, provides us with the necessary pause, the opportunity to recalibrate, and the freedom to know and understand the next right action. When you take space you take back your power, you strengthen your confidence, and you remember the deep feeling of trust in yourself that lives within you always.
Knowing all of this, I force myself to take space. When an email requires me to respond with important information, I take space. When I receive a difficult text message that triggers me and pushes me to want to send back an emotional response, I take space. When I simply don’t know what to do, I take space. The space allows me to breathe, to feel free, and to feel at peace, and it’s become one of the best things I’ve done for my life, for my work, and for my relationships.
Now, of course, we come to the physical act of taking space. Social distancing. Self-isolating. Quarantining. All of this has a similar power and meaning, given what is happening for all of us at this time. For a bit of time I downplayed the importance of this space in regards to our public health and welfare. In my own reflection and in educating myself, my naiveté was very wrong.
I’m not an expert on health, global pandemics, and public policy in response to these things, but I do know that when faced with potential catastrophe and preventable loss of life, it is crucial that we all take responsibility for ourselves and take the necessary precautions to stay healthy and well. I see the importance of taking this space, of limiting interactions and unnecessary social outings, and I encourage you all to consider what you can do to be apart of a solution to this global problem.
I also know that the ramifications of this global event are very anxiety producing. There’s so much at stake. So, I also encourage you all to really take care of yourselves in mind, body, and spirit. This is where social media can be a true friend. While you are in this necessary time of taking space, please remember to stay connected virtually, and find your safety and security in the space that you take.
Know that we are here for you and this community supports and loves you, always.
Michelle is Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life's Creative Director and resident writer. She has a degree in Journalism from Indiana University and is also a certified holistic health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and registered yoga teacher with trainings with Anuttara Yoga Shala and Strala Yoga. Michelle has a deep desire to help people find happiness in all areas of their lives, and truly believes the Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life movement will bring lasting change to the world. Michelle splits her time between Florida and New York City and loves connecting with people from all over the world. If you'd like to contact her, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org