On a coaching call last night, and I asked what does Level 2 mean for everyone.  For some it does mean freedom and the chance to move forward with plans, for others it brings with it a huge amount of anxiety and fear of the unknown.
Whether people are immunocompromised and are fear of still getting COVID, or whether people have lost jobs in this time, or the future of their business is uncertain.  Maybe relationships have changed over this time and now is the time where affairs need to be dealt with.  Maybe as Te Raumahora. Our Whanau Leader, mentioned online recently people have been supported with housing or other living arrangements and now are facing struggles as those options come to an end.
For others it may be that for a while we were all in the same storm, but as we head towards a new normal, some may feel like they are being left behind again.
For some it may be that actually what they are going through has nothing to do with COVID, and it is ongoing battles they are fighting and that actually it makes no difference what Level it is.
If this is you.  We hear you.  We hear your pain and your struggles and we want to reassure you that you are not on your own on this journey.  We may not have all the answers, but we are here in your waka to weather the storm with you.
I have been having many discussions with clients and in different groups that I run, around feeling safe during this time and really any time that causes us anxiety.  Here are some of the ideas people find have worked for them.
Support and connection with others.  Having a support network, this comes up so often, but in this case it really is those people, or even one person that can help reassure you, that gets it, that understands.  It may not be a friend or family member, it may be a therapist, a member of the Retreat team or someone from another organisation that you have that relationship with.
Support and connection with ourselves. When we don’t have this self-connection going on things can feel very rocky, or we may feel that all the ‘good stuff’ is going to disappear.  Tuning in to our own needs and responding to them, being kind, being gentle are all things that will help us feel calmer, feel safer, more grounded.  
Looking after ourselves.  This is probably talked about in every wellbeing article ever, but a reminder is always good!  It can be hard to feel safe when we are not sleeping well, eating well, getting enough water, moving our body in a way that works for us.  There are basics for survival (check out Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs) and it can be very hard to plan/move forward/create/resolve/action when we don’t have some of those basics going on.  So what could be something in this area that you could do to look after you today?
Having a purpose. Some felt that having a sense of purpose helps bring meaning in to their life giving them another focus as well as the warm fuzzies when we do make a difference in someone else’s life.  Sometimes when we are struggling that’s all we can see, it’s all that goes round in our head, a focus like this can help us give our mind a break from that for a while.

Imagine that safety. Thinking back to a time or place, whether just quietly or through journaling, that gave you that sense of safety, where were you, who were you with, what were you doing, sit in that space for a while and really wrap yourself up in those feelings again.
Identify your reliables. Whether that’s a playlist of favourite songs, a cuddle with the cat or a walk with the dog, a favourite spot around the house, in the garden or locally that just helps you feel the love or through four-legged ways, gives you that unconditional love that is so magical at these times.

So whether you have read this article for yourself or maybe there’s someone you can pass it on to, we hope it’s given you some thoughts to ponder on, and maybe spend some time with these points and seeing what may help you feel reassured, safe, secure, and grounded, because you so deserve to feel that way.  And if you are feeling strong, confident and okay on all of this, maybe keep eyes and ears open for those that may not be.  It may not be who you think, and they may be finding it hard to put their hand up or reach out.

You are loved.
You are supported.
We are here.

Author: Liz the Life Coach
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