I am very much looking forward to a new normal on earth as we slowly but surely move through social distancing and back into a time of hugging, holding hands, and gathering to celebrate. Even while we “social distance” however, it seems most of us have become closer and more aware of our connectedness. I pray we maintain that consciousness moving forward.

I look forward to the future when we take the masks off and see each other smiles once again, but I know even with physical masks on, we have been removing the masks from our souls. We have been making eye contact, really looking at the people around us. May we maintain that intimacy as we move forward, truly seeing one another as our very own family.

I look forward to the future when we never again take for granted medical personnel, delivery people, store clerks, and all those who held us up while the world was down. May we all realize that rich or poor, prestigious or quietly serving, we all play a valuable and integral part of the human dance.

I look forward to a future where employers that once doubted people could work from home allow those who can and wish to do it, and thus reduce overhead, increase profits, and have happier employees.

I look forward to a future in which families walk and talk and experience the “real” world in nature more often; one in which nature herself is valued more highly by all and kept clean and pristine for generations to come.

I look forward to a future in which we cherish and give thanks for the freedoms we have, and never again take a thing or a person for granted.

I look forward to a future in which we value life, one another, and our simple pleasures. May we never again take a roll of toilet paper for granted, or the role of another fellow human being in our lives.

May we realize we can make the best of any situation no matter how dire.

May we remember always that in the face of a darkness that swept the earth, we found a greater light.

Who do you want to be moving forward? What do you want to move forward into? Here are some pointers to help sort that out…

1. Taken inventory – pre and post pandemic

These are questions for self-reflection. There are no right answers – only right for you.

Make a list of things you loved to do before the pandemic.
Make a list of things you loved to do during.
What do you wish to change after?

Write down how you saw yourself before the pandemic.
Write down how you saw yourself during.
Who do you want to be when this is over?

Write down how you related to other people before the pandemic.
Write down how you related to others during the pandemic?
How would you change how you relate to others after?

2. How would you like your life to change?

Looking at your answers above, think about what you learned, liked, or disliked, during these mandatory quarantines, and intense times. What parts of your life need to change to make you happier, healthier, or more balanced? What has to shift in how you relate to others? Are there aspects of your life you wish to change?

You might crave going back to work, or realize you want to work from home.

You might see that a relationship requires counseling, or quitting, or that one has been resurrected and needs ongoing time together as you move forward.

You might miss aspects of your old social life or realize you want to spend less time out and enjoy more meaningful interactions.

You may have realized you are eating very creatively and learn to spend less, waste less, and enjoy more.

You may never take TP or any other product you use for granted again. You may have started using sponges instead of paper towels, a bidet instead of TP, or bleach solution instead of fancy cleaners. No judgment… do you like your changes? If so keep them, if not find better.

Again, there is no right answer, only right for you…

3. Resolve to make changes a little at a time

Make a list of the changes you want to carry forward into your future. They can be small or large:

I want to work from home.
I will greet everyone I see with a smile.
I will wash my hands before meals from now on.
I will waste less food.
I will take more time in nature.
I will learn something new Online every week.
I will contribute something Online every week.
I will smile and thank every delivery person or medical person I see.
I will write thank you’s to all who helped me during this time.
I will take better care of my body.
I will eat all my stocked up good and put grocery money in savings
I will donate regularly to a food bank…

Again, only you can write your own list. There is no judgment, and no right or wrong… just right for you.

Who do you want to be moving forward? How would you like your “new normal” to look?

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “There’s no going back now.” Even if we want to “get back to normal” we can’t because normal is changing. That, ultimately, is a good thing.

Be patient as we rebirth ourselves. Let’s do it consciously, with greater awareness, and in so doing, create kinder lives for ourselves, and therefore a kinder and more connected world.

Love you all!

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