The Zen Library Blog

The Perils of 'Staying Safe'

Thursday 15th October 2020

It took a long time to get to the point where I felt I could surrender to OCD anxiety. Every ounce of my being told me that I wasn't safe and performing a compulsion to create that feeling became the standard practice. Practicing surrender is something that requires daily practice and it seems to be something that is lost in today's world. 

More than ever before, we seem to be fighting to survive. With the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic, 'staying safe' is the phrase that I hear repeated more often than not. At the end of a phonecall with a relative, when we leave work and say goodbye to our colleagues, 'stay safe' is how conversations seem to end now, something which I understand but don't fully agree with. With social distancing and wearing face masks, we have forgotten one intrinsic component - the human connection with people around us. 

Repeating the phrase 'Stay Safe' implies we are constantly in danger and need to be on the lookout. When we are in a constant state of fight or flight and our sympathetic nervous system is engaged, flooding our bodies with adrenalin and cortisol, we are in a constant state of arousal which may negatively impact our body and reduce our chances of actually fighting a viral infection. 

Stress weakens the immune system. What we need to do is allow ourselves to relax a bit more and not worry so much about 'Staying Safe.' Eating a healthy diet, getting enough rest, exercise and taking care of our emotional wellbeing is how we can also protect ourselves from Covid-19. 

Seeing danger around every corner will not help us to find the strength we need to fight infection by itself. Loving ourselves, building connection within our communities and living in a way that supports our highest good will inspire other people to find different solutions. 

The current economic system we have does not work. That much I know. As to the solutions, that is up to us. 

All of us. 

Covid-19 is a massive opportunity for change that benefits all of us, not just the elite. As far as I'm concerned, 'Staying Safe' means living in protection, not growth. We will not try if we fear danger in every moment. I do not accept Covid-19 as the 'New Normal.' What I do accept is the challenge of finding a better way to live. 

I hope you do too. 

© Copyright Christina McDonald 2020