Sunday, May 3, 2020
Good morning and happy first Sunday of the month! It’s crazy to think we are already into May! Even with the pandemic and stay at home order, this year is flying by too quickly! We’re already seven weeks into staying at home. What’s one or two more weeks, right? Make each day count. Live life with hope and energy. We’re on the road to recovery. Do your best to maintain your motivation, discipline and mental fortitude. Eat healthy, exercise, rest and enjoy nature. My tip for the day; exercise doesn’t have to be conventional or organized. Get up and move your body. Take it one day at a time. Keep those muscles strong and joints limber. Get outside and enjoy some sun. I know I’ll be out there! Good health is a lifestyle.
I have been experiencing a wide range of thoughts and a variety of emotions over the last several weeks. Many of us may share similar patterns or concerns. I find it difficult to believe a person could not share in the ups and downs brought on by all this. If you’re lucky enough not to feel the anxiety, my question is, “Are you living on planet earth right now? What are you doing differently?” Everyone around the globe is experiencing and living this together in real time. The pandemic is inescapable. It is just so crazy how the entire scenario continues to run its course. The consequences of the virus, quarantine and economic fiasco are unbelievable. There are times comprehending all of this is difficult, but then again, it’s not so difficult at all. Our world is an immense sphere with billions of people living on it. The virus has made the earth feel relatively small in comparison right now. We truly are, all in this together.
The situation in the USA really began for many of us in mid-March. It started with the initial call to “stay at home.” I said, “This should be pretty easy. What’s a couple weeks at home.” Little did I realize the drastic turn of events the coronavirus would create. The virus is taking us down a road never travelled in our time. Strange, interesting, difficult and sad times for so many. The disease and sequestering has brought new challenges physically, mentally and spiritually.
I have been mentally strong for many years. My transformation began in high school running on the cross country team. I learned about endurance and mental toughness. I realized my body could physically last much longer than my mind was telling me. After graduating from college I worked as a firefighter on a Hot Shot crew for the US Forest Service. My initial fire season pushed me far beyond what I ever imagined my physical body and mental fortitude could withstand. I learned I could push my body much further than imagined. During my second season as a Hot Shot, I was given the task as a sawyer. A sawyer operates a chain saw. We had two sawyers, each with a brush puller, leading the crew at the front. It was challenging and arduous work to say the least. I became so much stronger, mentally and physically.
It became easy to recognize when my mind would want to shut me down. When my body began to experience fatigue, my mind would say stop. Learning it’s possible to push beyond is an amazing educational process. Realizing what my mind and body can withstand, pushing myself to the limits, was incredible. It is quite amazing what you can accomplish when you control your will and mental capacity. I was able to work past the fatigue and pain. I could block those sensations, continue to push forward and work harder and longer. This mindset ability became a truly valuable tool during the police academy and my career in law enforcement.
Similarly, fear can become an overpowering demon if we surrender. It can appear like an ominous force. If you do not confront your fear, it has the ability to paralyze or render you helpless. We all feel or experience fear in our lives. It’s a natural human response. The question to ask yourself; do you allow it to consume you or do you have the ability to control those feelings when initiated. Whenever or however fear presents itself, your best defense is in understanding it. The better we understand ourselves and the world around us, the easier it is to conquer the unknown. Remember, knowledge is power. It gives us the ability to rule over fear. It’s also about finding the truth; over lies, misinformation or fake news.
To win in your battle over fear, consider the origin, source or basis of the fear. How or why is it being perpetuated. Is it real or perceived? Is it something you can control? Often times, fear is based on what we do not know. If there is a threat, we react based on our control of that fear. We evaluate the situation and logically make a decision. If the threat is immediate, our decision making time speeds up. The coronavirus is an unknown. Even our scientists and experts are still learning about it. Do your own research from trusted sources. Make informed and intelligent decisions based on the truth, rather than fear.
I have to admit, even being mentally strong, I find it increasingly difficult to watch network or mainstream news programs. No matter where I turn; television, internet or social media, it’s all about the coronavirus. Watching this day after day makes my head spin. The local and national news outlets seem to rehash much of the same daily or weekly events. They spout statistical data and opinions but don’t necessarily provide anything new. It is amazing how many of the news outlets use the same verbiage in their broadcasts. The only difference between media sources is their agenda or political slant they place on the story. It would be wonderful to hear what’s happening here and in the rest of the world without all the clutter. I’m sure there must be other things happening beside the pandemic. It becomes frustrating when you’re just seeking the truth.
In my search for global news, I’ve tuned to public stations sharing international news. Many countries initiated lock downs and social distancing protocols, similar to the USA. There are other countries that have followed different approaches to limiting the virus outbreak and spread. I find this information very intriguing. The vast majority of information still revolves around the virus and the “new normal.” The encouraging stories are outweighed by spouting more fear. This tactic only serves to create more stress and anxiety. I no longer wish to be bombarded by the agony the virus brings or feel powerless by staying at home.
Now I limit my news sources and amount of intake. I go outside as much as possible; walk, run, exercise or just enjoy some sunshine and nature. Remember, good physical and mental health are key ingredients to better living. I know this is a disease similar to others. In maintaining a strong immune system, I am confident in my health. This is all part of our world. We can’t control everything. The virus will run its course. I will continue to focus on what I can control and live my life.
Having a better knowledge and understanding of what is happening around the world encourages hope. I know this virus has and will continue to affect many across the globe. By maintaining my personal health and assisting those close to me, I know I increase my physical and mental outlook. Countries like Denmark and Sweden are already moving forward beyond the virus. I embrace the fact that certain procedures should be maintained to protect those most vulnerable. I also recognize the importance of getting our economy up and running very soon. The economic devastation caused by the quarantine and “stay at home” order is wreaking havoc across the nation and world. So many businesses and people are floundering to stay safe and secure; economically, physically and mentally.
It’s nice to see our country, as well as other nations, beginning to rebound. Don’t give in to the “fear.” Be selective in where you seek your news and information. Please choose wisely. Limit your amount of time spent on social media or news outlets regarding the virus. Do your upmost to maintain your health; physically, mentally and spiritually.
Please tune in and join me again next Sunday for more! The healthy life puzzle is always in rotation. Let’s be healthy and strong mentally, physically and spiritually!
Thanks for your love and support! Embrace Life! Be sure to get outside and enjoy nature!
4 thoughts on “Mental Fortitude vs Fear”
Good morning! I’m staying off social media as well. The hate of different opinions is too much. I love reading. I’m a HUGE geek, so I’ve decided to use my time more productively by reading. Mike and I hike every day and do yoga. Hope you have a fantastic week! Namaste!
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Good morning Victoria! Thanks for reading and your comments! Big hugs! Stay well my friend!
Good morning! I totally agree with you. I like Sweden’s model. It made more sense to me. I’m staying off Facebook because of the hate of different opinions. I’m a huge geek and have book shelves full of books that I never had time to read. Well that time has come. I’ll fill my mind with knowledge instead of hysteria. I refuse to become a sheep. It’s not in my DNA. Sheepdog till the end… “fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10. Hope you have a fantastic week. Namaste!
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Thanks Gunnybear! I appreciate your comment! Knowledge is power. Stay well.