Deep Adaptation

In these extraordinary times,”to bend but not break” seems to be a very apt intention. Lerner believes that if we  are able to deeply adapt it will lead to courageous and creative new forms of resilience  – and opportunity. It requires us to adopt different ways of being and doing, as well as thinking to realise the opportunity and not see the disruption as an inconvenience.

We can hope that cultures and civilisations will find unanticipated ways to adapt to the ‘perfect storm’ we are currently facing across the globe. We can hope that the said ‘deep adaptation’ does indeed lead to courageous ways of doing things differently to the way we have  done in the past. Finding creative new forms of resilience, tapping into a deeper connection with what truly matters. 

To step outside the tried and true into the unknown.

It seems we are all living a little closer to the edge of existence –  in suspended, liminal time – on the verge of something big. It is now plainly obvious that life does not always go on as usual. And in that truth, are potentially great blessings. Lorna Bevan encapsulates by saying:

“This can be seen not so much as a rapture, but a rupture – a complete deletion of old ways and bifurcation of Worlds.”

A re-balance of things that were out of balance. 

I have certainly taken the time to reassess what was out of balance for myself. I have always taken time for physical exercise,  so that was fine, and my spiritual practice as well, but I have identified four areas for re-balance:

– Procrastination – not setting aside the time to write, which is a nourishing outlet for me
– Busyness – the distraction of the 3D world of constant communication, emails, texts.
– Connection – with dear friends and family had been pushed aside and
– Reading – all those books I have collected for that “some day when I have time”.

Whilst a kinder way of helping us re-balance and transform would have been appreciated, it has certainly awakened many across the globe. The initial shock at the scale of the ‘dis-ease’ was confronting, and then the rhythm shifted to ‘planning’ and ‘action’ with some leaders demonstrating greater clarity and empathy than others. 

At times like this, we often do look to our leaders for guidance. Our acceptance of what they are asking us to do differently, can vary according to the level of trust we have in them having our best interests at heart. Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand, has, yet again demonstrated her ability to lead in a crisis. She has provided clear and consistent communication, decisiveness, plus deep listening and a genuine sense of caring. At the heart of it, she has demonstrated resilience. And this has flowed through to the people of New Zealand. 

Resilience is not something we need to teach people. Resilience flows directly from the deepest human instincts of loving and caring. We ‘instinctively’ seek to survive and help those we love and care for to survive and flourish. In fact, we often care more about others than we do about our own survival. We are seeing this with our ‘front line’ health-workers. – both locally and across the globe. I am in awe and total admiration of their dedication, their commitment, and their willingness to put others before themselves. 

The Prime Minister of Ireland has re-registered as a Medical Doctor, and intends to practice one week a month in addition to guiding his country through the crisis. His people trust him. He is adapting to what is needed.

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, “What are you doing for others?”

Martin Luther King.

To this, I would add: “ What are you doing for your ‘self’”? You have to save your own life before you can save someone else. 

A client I was speaking to yesterday said that as a family, they have resurrected board games. Every night they gather together around the table to play and connect. This is a way of deepening your family ties. 

Book-ending your day with rituals and routines to ensure you are adapting is essential.

• Connecting with what is important.
• Connecting with who is important to you.
• Connecting with how you want to BE moving forward.

A wonderful quote, I came across encapsulated this moment in time for me:

“And once the storm is over you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, in fact, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.” 
Haruki Murakami

This moment in time is giving us precious time to rethink, release, reset, renew and embrace the re-orienting.

What would you like this storm to be about for you?
What needs to be shed and let go?
What needs to be nurtured and developed?
Do not waste it. 

Whilst we may feel as though we are in a state of flux, there has never been a better time to take the leap, and deeply adapt. When we have strong roots we have the capacity to Stand Tall, owning our truth. 

When you find that place inside yourself that is already thriving, what will get created?