TWO WEEKS AGO, I was driving to my interview for the Homeland Security Trusted Traveler Program to get my Global Entry card. I had applied last October as part of the planning for our first international trip in 12 years. Overseas news of the COVID-19 Corona virus was just beginning to seep into American mainstream consciousness, and it occurred to me that our trip could be in jeopardy. At the appointment, I was careful to open and close doors with my elbow, use a paper towel to turn the faucet knob in the public restroom, and cough in my sleeve. After they fingerprinted me, I immediately used their hand sanitizer (not my usual practice). I knew something was coming.
TWO WEEKS AGO, I was also getting ready to publish my first nonfiction book. PERSPECTIVE: Harness the Power of Your Mind to Reignite Your Spirit was a writing odyssey that began in July 2018 in response to encouragement from some of my clients and friends. The idea of writing a book was a nebulous concept for many months, entering and retreating from my mind’s eye like a hummingbird dipping in and out of a flower. I played around with an outline of chapters for quite a while. There were many months when I could barely bring myself to look at what I’d written, I thought it was such rubbish. But I kept going.
The editing and revising phase was the hardest part. Reading the same content over and over, it was hard to stay clear on messaging, voice, flow, and placement, not to mention agonizing over word choice and what content to include. If it weren’t for my supporters, I’m not sure I’d be standing here typing this post about my now published book.
TODAY was the day of our planned departure to Europe. Our trip has since been canceled as so much of travel has been disrupted in the interest of social distancing and protecting the vulnerable in our society. Thankfully science won out over poor politicking, and people are now heeding public health guidance. Instead of excitedly flying over the Atlantic, I am now conscientiously hunkered down and responding to messages from my readers (which is my new favorite activity). While I feel some measure of disappointment over the loss of our trip, I also feel curious. I wonder how I can be a helper during this uncertain period of collective challenge and opportunity.
TODAY readers are telling me that my book’s message couldn’t have come at a more fitting time. They are saying that shifting how they look at things is helping them navigate this unprecedented seismic shift in how we live and interact. It wasn’t in the plan to be stuck at home. It wasn’t in the plan to release my book during a global pandemic. And it wasn’t in the plan to have our lives upended. The only constant in life is change, this I know.
IN THE COMING DAYS, will my message about shifting perspective to find what's right about what's wrong, to balance human being with human doing, to practice self-care, agency, compassion, and curiosity help to carry us through?
I hope so.
Certified Health and Lifestyle Coach, Sheryl Melanson, partners with people to transform limiting habits into mindful choices that express their values, create action plans and recalibrate their lifestyle to optimal well-being.