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Leather Notebook
  • Writer's pictureChloe Thomas

Why I Feel Relief...

...During the COVID-19 Pandemic.

I'm going to be honest with you all.

I. Am. Relieved.

I feel as if I just received permission, from the highest Universal Source, to stop. To take a big, deep, soul nourishing breath.

To rest. Slow down. Just be.

To FINALLY cut myself some slack.

I have been exhausted, and I have been feeling very ashamed and guilty for feeling that way because it seems ungrateful somehow. I shouldn't get tired, running my own business is a privilege, I should always find it easy, fun, exciting, and fulfilling because I'm lucky that I even have the opportunity to run my own business. Getting tired feels like I'm being ungrateful and somehow disrespecting everyone who values and supports what I do in the process.

Obviously these beliefs aren't true, but these things are not easy to recognise and let go of when you're tangled up in them. Instead of meeting my exhaustion with compassion, I met it with judgement, which led to guilt and shame, which only created more exhaustion, and so the cycle continued. As conscious as I thought I was being of my Self, of my mind, body, needs, and overall well-being, I had slipped back into old patterns of self-criticism, neglect, burnout, and overwhelm. I was still using busy-ness (and business) to dissociate and avoid meeting my thoughts, emotions, sensations and perceptions with compassion. With an open heart.

I was back in the thick of life, and I was struggling to maintain my awareness, growing desperate for that sense of retreat. That feeling I had been experiencing just a few weeks earlier when I attended a beautiful 4-day silent retreat in Margaret River, facilitated by Ava Irani. The feeling that felt so distant to me now.

Now, in the midst of a global pandemic, with self-isolation, social distancing, and suspended hands-on practices, I feel as if the Universe has offered me that retreat space once more, and I am feeling this overwhelming sense of relief as I settle back into stillness, into my Being. I'm even feeling excitement. This is a very rare opportunity for me to return to that space within myself, without the external pressures of my business, the expectations of others, and societies desperate and persistent demands to show up, take part, do more, and keep going. The demands that champion 'busy', and stigmatise 'rest'. Now, I am able to fully and completely rest in the stillness, to embrace creativity and activity without the desperate, ego-driven busy-ness. To connect with my experiences from my Being, and to sit back and witness the once overwhelming thoughts to always do, do, do, without chasing after them, because now there really is nothing to 'do' but rest.

I am choosing to embrace this time of upheaval as a catalyst for transformation. For some much needed rest, deconditioning, cultivating, and re-discovering my Self, as well as a time to adjust the course of Flying High so that its offerings and operations resonate with the practitioner I am becoming.

This virus, this global cry for us to stop, rest, and heal, to turn away from busy-ness and focus on community and wellness, has granted me a reprieve. Suspending my business has given me the opportunity to firmly establish a foundation of self-care that will keep me feeling nourished and supported when I begin my next chapter. A chapter that will allow me to help in whatever way I can during this pandemic, and the chapter that will follow, when it is considered safe to reconnect in person again and I am able to re-open my hands-on practice.

I hope you are all safe and well during this strange time, and I hope you are all witnessing your thoughts and feelings with compassion, not judgement. Now is the time to be gentle with ourselves, and each other, as we navigate this new territory together.

Here are some photos from my stay at Honeyeater Ridge in Margaret River. It was an honour and a pleasure to spend four days of silence in such a beautiful place.


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