If you’re reading this now, in March of 2020 we are in the midst of a global pandemic called the Coronavirus, and I wanted to talk about the fear, anxiety, and uncertainty of this time and how we can help ourselves and help one another get through this. So one of the first things I did today is I pulled some tarot cards during my meditation time. I always pull tarot cards every day, but I also pulled an Oracle card. This Oracle card is from the Wild Offering Oracle by Tosha Silver.

The card says, “Confidence: divine confidence is completely different from the bravado of the ego. You make space for something larger to take hold. Please fill me with your confidence, oh love. Grant me courage that I never knew I had.” And then for the tarot cards, I may have mentioned before, I use the Crystal Unicorn Tarot by Pamela Chen, and this deck is usually actually quite funny, the way that it communicates with me.

And so when I asked the question, “What is it that we need in order to move through this, this pandemic, this issue with the Coronavirus?,” The card I picked was the Two of Pentacles. Now, if you’re familiar with the Rider Waite Smith tarot deck, you’ll know it’s kind of a jester character, and they are balancing two coins within an infinity symbol or the Unicorn Crystal tarot deck, it’s a unicorn that’s balancing an infinity symbol on its back. The meaning of this card in general is flexibility. So putting these two together, what do we need in order to move through this to come out on the other side feeling connected and feeling okay? I love the idea of needing confidence and flexibility.

We need flexibility in order to transition, in order to do things differently.  We are being asked to stay in our homes, many of us. And we’re being asked to make major changes in our lives right now. We need flexibility in order to do that. Some of us have access to more privilege, and so, have the opportunity for more flexibility than others. I’m hoping we can also utilize our flexibility in lending support to other people who don’t have the same access to, let’s say, working from home, or medical care. 

And then there’s confidence. I love the idea of thinking about confidence from a place of interconnectedness to something greater than ourselves. Dare I say the word faith? I would also think that this type of confidence really is connected to faith. Faith that we can get through this. I’ve been freaking out about this lately, and I saw on The Today Show yesterday, one of their medical experts said, “We have to remember that this is temporary.”

As soon as I heard that, there was something in me that took a breath,was able to pause and stop freaking out for just a moment. So I’m hoping for everyone listening to this that we’re able to adopt flexibility and confidence in this time of crisis. 

I also wanted to share with you my personal experience of being a business owner and people manager, and what I’ve been thinking about as this crisis is becoming more and more urgent and increasingly difficult. The first thing that came to mind for me is, “How are my staff going to maintain their income during this time?,” and, “How do I make sure that my staff are okay during this time?”In my practice, Head/Heart Therapy, I’d say 90% of our clientele use medical insurance. And for the most part, up until now, insurance companies haven’t necessarily reimbursed for telehealth, such as phone or video sessions. MyAnd then obviously really connected to that is, “How are our clients going to get care when we’re limited in the ways that we can provide service?” And this part just made me think about how we have to advocate for insurance companies to cover services that are most accessible to folks. Virtual sessions and phone sessions need to be covered. So one thing I would ask of all you listeners and fans is to call your insurance company and ask them to cover these services, not just during the Coronavirus crisis, but at all times, because there are plenty of reasons why people would need to access telehealth in order to maintain the same level of care that they would as if they came in in person. That’s something you can do to help yourself and to help others in moving past this Coronavirus. 

Another  thought I’ve been wrestling with is, “What is my level of responsibility as a business owner to take care of my staff and our clients?” And as soon as I asked that question, the next thing that comes up for me is, “Who’s going to help me?”

I’ve realized in examining my reaction to everything that’s going on — the lack of safety I have been feeling in this — is so familiar. It  feels like the lack of safety I experienced in my childhood. Especially this question of who’s going to help me. Whenever I’ve asked that question in the past, that’s when I’ve historically doubled down on the pressure on myself to take care of everything and everyone else…and neglect my own needs.

Once I recognized my reactions, I had some decisions to make. I was supposed to go out of town for a business trip. I was continuing to wait, listen to what was going on in the news, and see whether it was okay for me to continue to go on this trip or not. And ultimately, I decided to cancel. I decided that the anxiety of becoming a carrier for this virus was too great because I would have no control over who I was meeting, and who would be on that plane with me. Canceling  helped my anxiety. And then I reached out to my therapist. I had canceled our session because I was supposed to be out of town. I said, “Hey, I can come in anytime today.” And she said, “Four o’clock?” And I was there on the dot.

I’ve also used an amazing group of other bad-ass therapy practice owners too, tapping into our collective knowledge to figure out how we can support each other instead of having us each do everything  individually, from contacting insurance companies, to figuring out what the billing codes are and much more. I’m just so grateful to have a bunch of amazing women in my life who are willing to share their knowledge and wisdom with me. 

So what can you do? I’m sure like many folks, you may be wondering,  “What am I supposed to do right now?” I think if we can collectively focus on opportunities for connection and rest at this time, it’s going to help our collective anxiety.

I have a couple of tips  for you. I’ve started really digging into lovingkindness meditation again. It’s something that I used to do as a regular practice, and I had gotten away from it. But I saw on Instagram, somebody said, “When you’re washing your hands, instead of singing ‘Happy Birthday,’ how about reciting the lovingkindness meditation?” It’s about 20 seconds, too. So if you’re not familiar with the lovingkindness meditation, it essentially is extending love and kindness to oneself and to all beings. There are different ways that you can do it, but this is a way that I’ve been able to memorize and that I often do in my meditations. You can say, 

May I be happy. May I be healthy. May I be safe. May I be loved. 

Just repeat that over and over to yourself throughout your meditation. If you’d like to extend this outward, you can also change it to:

May all beings be happy. May all beings be healthy. May all beings be safe. May all beings be loved.

That’s one thing you can do for yourself at a time when so many meetings and events are being canceled. We could use this as a time to catch up on all the work that we haven’t been able to get to, which truthfully is what I did today. But we can also allow ourselves some down time to relax, to feel, and step into what we actually need in the moment. Sometimes doing extra work actually makes my anxiety go down because I’m getting something done, and getting something off my plate that I don’t have to worry about later. But sometimes what I really need is to take a bubble bath, watch something silly on TV, or  call a friend and connect with them.

See if you can sit with the question, “What is it that I really need right now?” Give yourself space to do that. And then finally, in terms of connection, try using Marco Polo. It is the best app that I have ever found! It is so wonderful to be able to see people’s faces and to hear their voices and be able to connect with them in that way. Marco Polo does not give me any money for advertising. I just advertise for them because  it has truly changed the relationships in my life. Even if you don’t use the app Marco Polo, you can certainly find a way to reach out and stay connected to people, even though we might be isolating ourselves physically from one another. We don’t have to isolate ourselves emotionally. 

And then lastly, my podcast Conversations with a Wounded Healer has virtual community gatherings, which are  normally reserved for Patreon members — people who pay a small monthly gift as a token of gratitude for this podcast.  But because we’re in a time of crisis right now and we need more connection, I’m offering our next gathering to anyone who would like to participate. It’s coming up on April 1st from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. Central Daylight Time. And if you’re not already a Patreon member, you’ll need to give me your email address so that I can send you the link. To submit your email via  the survey. The link, go to:https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/SPQP896 All you have to do is let me know you’re interested in joining, and we’ll send you the link to participate in our virtual gathering. It’s 100% open to anyone, so feel free to share our link widely. 

Thank you so much for being with me today and  listening to my experience. I hope and hearing some options for taking care of yourself and for connecting with others is soothing to you.

May all beings be happy. May all beings be healthy. May all beings be safe. May all beings be loved.