By Julianne Haycox
Still, I Rise.
– Maya Angelou
The whole world is being asked to turn inward right now and come out with something positive. Our very best selves are being given a chance to shine. My experiences have taught me that uncertainty and challenge bring out the best in anyone that chooses to err on the side of optimism. When we live within a place of hope and trust, peace and strength are always close by. When the outcome is unclear and you can’t see the end in sight, trust. Reach inside of yourself where your faith resides and bring forth the belief in your own fortitude. Bolster the trust in yourself with your faith in a Source that is bigger than you. This Divine being sees the bigger picture and is always available for us to tap into and feel the inspiration, reassurance and wisdom.
When uncertainty comes into our lives, we are not powerless. There is power in our choices. Do you choose hope or fear? Do you choose truth or victimization? Do you choose growth or stagnancy? The unknown is a bed of opportunity. You have a choice each morning to rise and make the decision to be at peace before you step out of bed. The universe needs your positive choices. And at the end of the day when you return to your resting place, you will do so with ease knowing that your open mind made way for wisdom, hope and courage and your open heart made way for a loving energy that diffused into our world when it’s needed most.
The transformation that is underway all over the world is an ideal time for turning inward. Making time to genuinely sense and feel the essence of silence will calm your mind and restore your being. There is an opportunity at this fork in the road to collectively and individually heal and grow. Our shared calm can be felt and will be healing for all.
The dormancy of winter has passed for most. Spring has arrived and hints for us to lose ourselves in the awakening sounds of the earth. We are presented with the perpetually open door to the natural world every day but now more than ever we should heed its call. It is through this open door that the gift of solitude and stillness is found and it is within the stillness that the wisdom and peace arise.
As you sit in silence, ask for help, ask for calm, ask to stop thinking fearful thoughts, ask for clarity and strength, ask for peace and composure and within minutes, notice how your body softens. Notice the slowing of your breath and follow the feeling of ease as it whispers throughout your body and mind. Once you feel a release of fearful thoughts and a sense of openness, maybe you ask for harmony and humour as you suddenly adjust to becoming your child’s gym, art and math teacher. Spend some time in the early morning, before the rest of the house awakens to send a stream of gracious energy to your children’s teachers, who’s gifts you appreciate now more than ever, while realizing they too, are facing their own difficulties. Send the same good-hearted energy to yourself for embracing the challenges with playfulness, patience and grace. Ask for protection, strength and healing for the first responders, doctors and nurses that are caring for the sick, and send your sense of calm out to them.
Step out into the essence of the natural world and renew your life as nature renews with every season. We are in a season of stillness and we are being led to change our ways and utilize more nourishing, thoughtful and loving practices to grow individually and collectively.
In the words of Mother Teresa, “See how nature grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence. We need silence to be able to touch souls.” Get in touch with the silence within you and know that all of this has a purpose. This event is a blessing, but only if we learn from it. And if you can’t see the blessing yet, trust me, you will. What we need finds its way to us.
Julianne Haycox is a photographer, writer, and nature-lover whose inspiration comes from the beauty around her. Her first book Be Still and Know is a collection of her nature photography paired with favorite quotes. Her personal growth memoir Conversations with Grace (Koehler Books, March 24, 2020) explores how one can be guided through the most unpleasant intervals of life and not only survive, but evolve. In it she explores how spiritual connection has helped her navigate through unforeseen death, the loss of her baby boy, cancer, and a miraculous birth through surrogacy.