During a global pandemic, civil unrest, job insecurity, elections underway in America, it is safe to say this would not be the best time to be diagnosed with a serious illness. Still, I was. Just for the record, I am okay due to all the good wishes and on-going support of friends, as well as the healthcare workers at Kaiser Permanente. What began for me three months ago as a health challenge, I later named a “health crisis.” Yet, as I went deeper into the self, I realized it is actually a “health opportunity.”
You might be curious to know how I morphed from viewing it as a health challenge, to a health crisis to a health opportunity? Well, it all began with the awareness that I have the power to choose how I respond to life’s unfolding. I believe we become what we think. As scary as that can be at times, the benefits outweigh the concerns. If I can grab those thoughts that truly represent the bigger part of my existence, then I am living my truth. This “health opportunity” reminded me that I have the power within to create what I want and how I envision my life to unfold.
We are now a full six months into living with the Corona pandemic.
For me, and most everyone I know, it’s been a very bumpy ride.
It’s kind of like white-water river rafting. Periods of smooth tranquil waters followed by occasional terrifying rapids where I’m holding on tight, hoping not to capsize.
There’s no map. We don’t know when or where the river ends.
Due to the pandemic, couples are finding they have more time together. Working from home, a lack of late-night meetings, a reduction in travel – all of these combined have meant more time to connect with our significant others. People who are intentional to use this time wisely are shutting off their television at night and working to create greater intimacy with their partner. Meaningful conversation, working together on projects around the house, making meals together, playing games, and having intimate romantic connection are all ways to use this time to benefit your relationship.
When children are involved there’s a secondary layer of stress added. Couples need to remember that this is a time of great stress, and that their (and their partner’s) reaction to everything is likely to be heightened.
It is not uncommon for relationships to struggle under the strain of the pandemic, the economy, general stress of life, knowing how and when to reengage in society safely, loss of jobs, homeschooling and more. However, I believe there are ways to keep relationships strong and healthy during these times. Rather than simply survive this crisis, I advise couples to use this as an opportunity to grow in deeper connection with each other.
Here are 6 tips to strengthen relationships with significant others:
The longer we are isolated the more we want to be together. But we do not gather because we love the people we are isolating ourselves from. That is why we are isolating. So the coronavirus is showing us new ways to express our love, creative ways, ingenious ways, joyful ways that expand the bounds of cocreativity and redefine togetherness away from the five-sensory understanding as physical proximity to the multisensory experience that is far beyond that.
The coronavirus is showing us how shallow were so many of our relationships that we thought were deep. Before the coronavirus reshaped our lives, we exchanged countless hugs, blew countless air kisses, and smiled countless smiles without inner warmth. Now, in our isolation, we are beginning to see that togetherness is more than these things. When I was addicted to sex I thought it was the ultimate experience of togetherness until I realized that the women I was attracted to and who were attracted to me did not care about me any more than I cared about them, and I did not care about them. They were all replaceable to me, and I was replaceable to all of them.
For me and many of the people I’ve spoken to who are part of the stay-at-home population, it feels like one day is rolling right into the next with not that much changing in any given 24-hour period.
Of course, if we’re working from home or home-schooling our children or are caregivers for our loved ones, the details of each day are numerous and ever-changing.
But it’s the general tone of the day that I’m speaking about...
I’m wondering about that question mark that’s hanging over the planet.
What is this shaking up of the world as we know it ushering in?
What will our personal and collective lives look like in a few months…
And in a few years?
Though there have been a few other pandemics over the last hundred years or so, never before have we experienced the repercussions of a pandemic like the one enfolding the whole of the planet today.
By Deepak Chopra, MD and Gustaf Kranck, M.Sc.
There is widespread awareness of the wellness movement in this country, and the term “self-care” is being more and more recognized. Since advice has existed for decades on proper diet, exercise, sleep, and the avoidance of alcohol and tobacco, in what way is self-care an advance? This seems like a critical question during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Self-care is an advance over the usual well-known preventive measures if it can do more, in other words, if there are choices that improve the whole mind-body system. Increasingly the key to self-care seems to be the vagus nerve. The general public awaits a silver-bullet treatment and a future vaccine, but the benefits associated with the vagus nerve are accessible by anyone right now.
Creating authentic power requires distinguishing love from fear in yourself and choosing love no matter what is happening inside you or what is happening outside. Our evolution now requires us to create authentic power. The coronavirus is teaching us how to do that. The reality of the coronavirus is often lost in the fear of it (including denial). The reality of the coronavirus is that no one is immune to it, and it is extremely contagious. The mortality rate of the coronavirus is much lower than small pox or bubonic plague, yet it is a deadly threat. That reality demands that we bring our fears into our awareness so that we can choose responsibly between our fears on the one hand and love on the other. This is important because not only your health depends upon your choices, but also the health of others.
In other words, the coronavirus is the perfect teacher of responsibility. The coronavirus is contagious days before its symptoms appear in you. You do not know when you become infected! During that time you can infect others without knowing it and without them knowing it (because they do not know when they become infected, either), and they can (will) very quickly infect others and on and on and on and on. These are the things that make the coronavirus very dangerous. It is extremely contagious, everyone can unknowingly infect anyone else, and it can kill you. In other words, if you mindlessly endanger yourself, you mindlessly endanger others. If others recklessly endanger themselves, they recklessly endanger you. To echo Lakota wisdom, the health of one is the health of all, and the illness of one is the illness of all.
Amidst the recent worldwide outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19), we are in uncertain times.
Worry, fear, and panic have swept across the planet, as the virus has threatened our health, well-being, economy, societal norms, and sense of safety.
Many people are quarantined at home, and social distancing has become a temporary norm.
During this time of such intense stress, sex is likely the farthest thing from many people’s minds. How can we make love when the world seems to be falling apart? Shouldn’t we spend our time watching the news and figuring out how to navigate these challenging times?
As a Sacred Sexuality Teacher with over 20 years of experience supporting clients, my #1 recommendation during this global pandemic is to make time for pleasure and sex.
Sex is not a luxury for when things are good in the world. Sex is a necessity. It is vital to our health, well-being, and sanity. Sex is important at all times, especially in times of stress and difficulty, like this current pandemic.
If you have a partner, set any differences aside, and get into the sheets for some essential self-care and stress relief. If you are stuck at home without a partner, no worries. You can self-pleasure and bring yourself the same benefits.