When people get covid-19, they tend to be worried or panicked. In my case, I tried my best to stay calm. I understand the more I get worried, the worse my situation will become. And I will not be able to make a clear decision of what I need to do. So I choose to stay calm.
The question is then ‘How?’ I stopped reading and following the news of what was happening in the world, around me or the world out there. I didn’t want to know the news about covid-19 either. I thought if something happened in the world out there and I needed to know or it was related to me, then I would know it soon. But if I didn’t know it, it might not be related to me.
I stopped using almost all the social medias. Yes I still used my WhatsApps during that period, but only to communicate with some people whom I needed especially in dealing with Covid-19, or who needed me for a support or encouragement especially knowing some of my friends were also positive covid-19. We were then supporting one another. I don’t watch TV, since I don’t have one now.
In this way I could manage my mind to have very less thoughts. I only allowed positive and encouraging thoughts for myself and for others. And the thoughts were so powerful. The less thoughts you have, the more powerful they become.
Yesterday a friend who lives in Japan was telling me about the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics. He said ‘Tokyo Olympics will be starting soon. Do you watch it?’ I smiled. I felt like I was reminded to the world sport event that is right now happening in Tokyo. So many people must have been waiting for this event.
I was asked if I have a daily practice to develop my self-respect. Self-respect definitely needs to be developed. It is self-developed. It is not given by somebody. It also needs to be nurtured. It is not an over-night work and when it is done, you can leave it. No! You need to nurture it. If not, it will die. Like a country, you need to have a security system to make sure that enemy will not attact the country any time. If the security system is not strong, your old enemy may come back to sabotage your self-respect. Who is your enemy? the ego. Always the same enemy. Probably the only enemy for self-respect. Ego is the false identity of the self, either your superior nor inferior one. When the ego rules, he hijacts your throne. You are not sitting on a stable seat of self-respect. The ego becomes the king and you become the subject.
My daily practice to develop and nurture my self-respect is meditation and journaling. It has become my morning practice for the last few years. I never missed these two in the morning to start my day. This is my ‘me time’. I hardly have any distraction in the morning time. No one needs me. No one wants to talk with me. No one calls me. This is the best time to invest my time and energy for myself.
Meditation is to know the self better. To know the self is to know what is going on inside me. What kind of movie that keeps playing in my head? I have to pay attention to this movie because it has a direct impact on me personally. So I need to know the quality of the movie. If you think you need to edit the movie, do it. You are the movie maker of your daily life.
Journaling is like creating the script of the movie. you are writing the story of your own movie. You are your own movie director. By putting it in writing, you make the story more real to you. Each day we are preparing our own script for our own movie.
This practice has helped me to remain seated on my throne. This is the stable seat for the self, where no one and no situation can bring you down.
How to develop self-respect? If looking at other people doesn’t develop one’s self-respect then the answer to this question is to stop looking at other people. Start looking at the self. The next question is ‘is it not selfish to look at the self?’
You experience a constant oscillation between high and low, superior and inferior, arrogance and depression through comparing yourself to other people. And it is definitely not comfortable. If you want to free yourself from this oscillation, if you want to invest your time and energy for something that frees you from experiencing this insecurities, then is it selfish?
To look at the self means to be reflective. To really ask the self what has gone wrong, what really needs to be done. It is like a heart-to-heart dialogue. You need to be very honest in this. The self is naked. Nothing to hide, including the insecurities. For some people it makes them uncomfortable, some avoid doing this.
When you can see your self-worth, when you develop your self respect, the automatic consequence is that you will start seeing it in others. You will start treating other people with respect too. What you keep doing to yourself will be reflected on how you treat other people. In other words, what you show externally is a reflection of what you do to yourself internally. So to start looking at one’s self is not selfish, because at the end it will be projected on others too. Kindness will not remain kept inside. A kind heart is a loving heart. Love is energy generated in the heart, it flows.
If someone is rude or unfriendly or even violent to other people, then understand that he surely does the same to himself. He is just reflecting what is inside. He is expressing his inner reality. You can not expect something different from this person. Have mercy on him instead.
Someone used to say this to me. Company colors the soul. You are colored by the company you keep – your spouse, your family members, your friends, your colleagues etc. Those whom you work with or spend time with. You may get colored or you may color them. It depends o how strong your color (influence) in the companionship.
Now look at people around you. What do you talk when you are with them most of the time? There are three things – stuff or event, ideas or other people.
Some people like talking about stuff, a branded bag they just purchased, the latest gadget, the band new car, some are talking about the game they are playing. Average people talk about stuff or event. And some are talking about other people. They are called small people. What other people are doing or not doing, have or not have are completely their own business. These type of people mind other people’s business. This is the type of people you should avoid to be around.
It is said great people talk about ideas. They use their creative mind. Happiness lies in this. Contentment starts here. Not in stuff nor in a game. Happiness created through buying a brand new suff is just temporary. How long do you experience the happiness after you bought your new car?
If you want to become great, surround yourself with people who talk about visions and ideas. Not people. Not stuff nor event. Select the company you want to keep.
Have you experienced yourself losing someone due to death? It might be your spouse, family member, relative or friend. How did you feel it? How did you deal with it?
My elder brother passed away only a few days ago. I got this sad news from his son who lived with him. I knew that he was the one who experienced loss the most for this.
When someone dies, actually it is the soul leaving his body. The soul still exists somewhere, not in that body but somewhere. Because the soul is eternal. It will never get destroyed. A soul is a very tiny point of light. A point of energy. Energy can not be destroyed. The body is the vehicle of the soul, it will go back to nature, where it belongs. You miss the soul (the spirit), not the body. It was the spirit that you call it as the ‘living’. And the body is in fact the ’non-living‘. If the spirit always exists and never gets destroyed, do you really lose him? No. He is just not around, but he still remains. Not here, but somewhere. You still can send your good wishes to him and it will surely reach the soul.
We are taught to have faith in life, in the self and in God. And in this particular situation of death, it is more about having faith in life. Everything that happens in life including death of someone’s is not a coincidence. It is what is meant to happen. Everything happens accurately. There is never a mistake. It happens at the right time, at the right moment. Are you ready to accept what is predestined to happen in life?
When I was telling this to my nephew, I felt like I was reminding myself. It somehow empowered him and me as well.
If you need to take a thousand steps to achieve your goal, you first have to start with your first step. For taking this one step, you need motivation. You definitely needs power to start something. How to get yourself motivated and have power to start. Someone might inspire you through what he has done. You might have known or even met many inspiring figures and you were so inspired and motivated. But why you don’t see yourself as successful as those who inspired you?
If you want to reach your goal, then motivation is not enough. Motivation is what gets you started. It is what makes you take your first step toward your goal. You still need to take another 999 steps. It is not easy. It takes time. It might also take your sweat and tears. It takes so much patience. What you need to do is to keep taking steps and not giving up.
You might need to take a completely different way or probably you need to develop a new habit and stop your old habit of doing. You may get yourself motivated by others, but when you have to develop a new habit, you have to do it alone. In this, that many fail. There is no shortcut to success.
Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.
This is a true story of my colleague on how he dealt with covid. It was Christmas Eve, last year. He had made a plan for a family gathering on that night. A few days before he got himself tested for covid and the result was only received on Dec 24th. He decided to have everyone in the house to do the rapid test with the quickest result. Four people of his family members got tested. They had to cancel the plan for the family gathering and change into a plan for a self quarantine. If the four members of the family would be positive covid, then they would stay in the house for their self quarantine. But if the rest of the family members were negative covid, then he would decide to leave the house and find a place for his self quarantine.
The results of the test were only received late in the evening via email. They were all negative covid. So he decided to leave the house that night. He packed his stuff in a luggage and drove himself to find a hotel for the quarantine. He was having no symptom of covid at that time. Only after mid night he checked in into a hotel. He managed everything by himself during the quarantine. After a few days in the hotel, he experienced himself to have some covid symptoms. He started to consider to go to hospital. And he ended up being hospitalized as a covid patient for about two weeks. He did it all alone. He had to go through his critical period in the hospital all alone. No family member could visit him. No colleague nor friend could visit him. This is covid. It is different. A solo battle! It takes so much strength to become the winner in this battle physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
I really appreciate how he managed himself. I think it was so heroic. He won the battle.
I make this time to revisit my heart, the spirit inside. It has been sitting there for such a long time. I have been very busy listening the noise of my ego in my head. I have been neglecting myself. I have started believing what my ego said to me and it has completely made my heart weak and broken.
I make this time to sit with my true self, and listen. I open my heart. I feel very confortable.
It speaks very gently to me: “You are very special. You are loveable. You are here to share your love. Open your heart and express your love. Let the energy flow from the inside out”
It is so empowering and encouraging.
I can feel the energy of love fills my heart. I feel myself empowered.
Now I invite the Greatest Healer to fill my heart with His healing energy. I keep my heart open for His pure loving energy. His love is unconditional. His love is permanent and so uplifting. He has a very loving heart to everybody. I can trust Him. I have nothing to hide from Him. I let Him help me in this healing process. I keep His company with me.
The feeling becomes stronger and stronger. This genuine love puts all the pieces of my heart together. It heals the wounds and the scars. My heart become whole again.
What do you expect from a relationship? There is an expectation in almost all relationships we have. We might not be aware of it until our heart gets hurt.
What do we do then? We stay away from those who have hurt our hearts. This is the easiest way, not necessarily the right way nor effective way. We stay away physically, though mentally we might still think about it. We still carry this hurt in our mind. Sometimes we also speak about it to people. Everytime we are giving our attention (energy) to it, the hurt becomes stronger. We sustain the hurt through this way.
The weak one will do that. But the courageous one will work on the inside. They will realize the expection they have from the relationship that they thought has given that hurt, and start working on it. It needs courage. To deal with the self always needs more courage. Many people are not ready to see themselves being fragile and weak inside. But if you choose this way, you will become so strong inside. Your heart is strong and protected. And you will stop blaming anyone or situation to be the reason for your hurt. Because it is always the expectation!
If someone asks you what you want to have for your heart, what would be your answer?
The other day I was sharing with a friend that I wanted to have an open and big heart. A heart that can love everybody. A heart that can accommodate everybody. A heart that will exclude or reject nobody. Everybody is included. Each one can experience a sense of belonging. This is the heart that can bring everybody close to each other where each one feels secured and safe. A heart that is whole.
Do you think it is possible?
Each one’s heart might have been broken into pieces these days. It is not whole any more. It might also have a lot of wounds and also scares. Somebody might be holding a little piece of his heart and the other is holding another little piece. Those two little pieces can not accomodate each other. You can not share your heart if it is broken into pieces. It is too small to share. A broken heart is a small and very limited heart. There is disunity when each one’s heart is broken.
I said to him that I have made this thought into a ‘must have’ menu in my meditation everyday. I visualize people of the whole world as one big family. We belong to One. I invite them to sit in my open and big heart.