Strength Through Adversity
As we consider what COVID-19 has done in the last few months, our view of a stable world has been shaken to its the core. Future plans for vacations, schooling and degrees, promotions, 5-year business strategies, or retirement have been turned upside down.
However, we often forget the principle of yin and yang ruling the universe. Light cannot exist without darkness. Day follows night. Polarity is necessary to create balance everywhere.
Being comfortable can be a place of stagnation and limitation. Challenges force us to grow. Watch a tree in a storm. It doesn’t try to maintain its form. It bends with the wind and rain until the storm subsides; then finds a new center. The tree grows new leaves to replace what was lost, becoming stronger and tougher.
The Dalai Lama said, “When we meet real tragedy in life, we can react in two ways – either by losing hope and falling into self-destructive habits, or by using the challenge to find our inner strength.” COVID-19 is the latest tragedy to cause death and illness across the globe to hundreds of thousands and adversely affect the international financial markets.
We were warned for years that such a virus could adversely impact our health systems. Yet such warnings were ignored. Now we have faced the reality of illness, death, financial loss, relationship stress, isolation, education shut downs, healthcare overloads, travel restrictions, and the loss of our comfortable way of life in the industrialized world. The crisis is slowing but not gone. We are moving toward normalcy. What have we learned?
We have survived. We have found our strength and adaptability. We have been grief-stricken, uncomfortable, anxious, depressed, stressed, and angry at the restrictions, but we have survived. We have lost loved ones, and have supported family and friends during their illness. We learned how to use the Internet and social media to work, go to school, and maintain contact with important connections. We have gotten instructions on staying healthy, exercising, healing, taking adult classes, learning new skills, keeping up with business strategies and customers.
In addition to shopping online, customers now order and pick up goods at the curbside from local businesses. Business owners offer more services and products online. Retailers adapted practices to the current environment to keep customers safe, and maintain the health of employees with safety protection and practices. Other industries discounted offerings to accommodate the financial reality of this time.
Parents are home-schooling their children, helping with online learning, making time to keep them occupied, safe and happy while sheltering. Relationships are thriving, or falling apart, as people are taking the time to delve deeper into their loving connections. People are meditating, exploring their inner world, discovering the stillness within. Time is a precious commodity we have learned to appreciate.
We are strong. We adapt and flourish. We never know what we could have done without going to work until we were forced to shelter during this crisis. Now we know our resilience. We have met this challenge and have overcome it. We can be proud.