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6 Simple Sutras to Stay Calm in the Middle of the Covid-19 Storm

Updated on April 13, 2020

One little virus has taken the whole wide world by storm and thrown lives all over the world askance. Countries all over the world are grappling with lockdown, economic crisis and deepening uncertainty. We are in uncharted waters. Not since the Great Depression has the world collectively experienced such unprecedented events. And each of us has our own set of worries, anxieties, fears ranging from health, jobs, bills, monetary worries to a general sense of foreboding over an uncertain future. And while we are all doing our best to work from home, maintain social distancing, quarantine when needed and engage in activities to keep gainfully occupied, there are times when the dark clouds of gloom and doom descend slowly over us and before we know it, we are tightly in its grip.

Here I share six simple daily practices that could be hugely helpful in maintaining calm and equilibrium.

Integrate these into your daily routine to derive the maximum benefit.

1.Engage with the past

Close your eyes. Go back to your earliest memory. The time you fell as a child, that spanking you got, that important test that you flunked, the precious possession that you once lost, that full-fledged spat with your best friend, that match you lost. At the time it seemed the end of the world, didn’t it? Hasn’t life moved on since then? Don’t you now laugh over it.

“You fell. You hurt. You grieved. You moped. And then magically one day you Healed”

In the process you also emerged stronger, sensitive to others and more appreciative of life. If you could do it as a child, there is a stronger reason to do it with more aplomb now.

2. Down Memory Lane

This is a twist to the previous exercise. Take out your old albums and leaf through them. Recall all your happy moments, the people, places, the memories, sounds, smells. Call your friends, reconnect with old friends and rekindle old memories, laugh over silly incidents. Talk with your grandparents and parents. Ask them to narrate stories from their childhood, adulthood. Tell them to recount stories of their difficult times and how they overcame them. Every generation has its own share of horrid times and listening to them helps us to bring perspective to our situation.

“If we threw our problems into a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.”

Tip: This can be a great bonding exercise for the family where generations can bond over shared stories. Engage your children. Just as we have photo albums, create your family’s own story-book with stories of ancestors, lifestyle, personalities, inspirational stories, family tree. Your family’s personal repertoire of stories.

Source

3. Become Mindful

One of the most beautiful practises, Mindfulness, is just being totally and simply present to the present. We spend varying amounts of time either occupied with the past or with the future. In uncertain times like the current one, it is common to have regrets about investments we didn’t make, money we didn’t save etc. The list is endless. The future quite naturally takes up a lot of mind space as well. The practise of mindfulness helps us to stay securely anchored in the present being grateful and enjoying what is.

One way to cultivate mindfulness is through mindful eating. While having your meal today, observe your food closely. Take in the colours, textures, patterns with your eyes and next, feel it with your fingers. Next, close your eyes, put the food in your mouth and feel the food with your tongue.See how your tongue reacts to your food. The taste buds will kick into action and start categorising the food- sweet, sour, salty, bitter, spicy, hard, soft, cold, moist etc. Let it. Eventually it will cease. When one starts eating mindfully, only the requisite quantity is consumed, curbing the tendency to put on weight as a by product of over eating. But these are only good side- effects. The beauty is in the calmness and serenity that it brings to your mind.

Slowly extend your Mindfulness to other activities. For that period of time , your mind is unavailable to worries and negativity. Half the battle won!! Yippeee!!!

“The present moment is your biggest present. Be available to it”

4. Reconnect with Mother Nature

Mother Nature is the biggest and most unconditional healer. She gives unending solace to all who seek her lap. Rejuvenate your relationship with her. Lose yourself in the beauty of a leaf, flower. Those who already have a garden, this is a great time to de-weed, learn some composting techniques, grow some microgreens, learn about indoor plants, photograph your garden, enhance your garden with the help of DIY pots and knick-knack. The choices are endless.

The power of a little flower to calm your mind.......
The power of a little flower to calm your mind....... | Source

Tip: Involve your children, elders in this activity. A garden can teach many things to children - the virtue of patience and surrender being the most important.

There is a famous heart-touching O. Henry short story called “The Last Leaf” about a girl Johnsy, afflicted with pneumonia who has lost all her will to live and has mentally connected her fate to an ivy creeper on a wall outside her window. Her friend gets a talented, albeit run- down artist to draw a leaf. It is a rainy night and the sight of a new leaf -on the otherwise bare creeper- in the morning serves as the most poignant sight for her sore-with-illness eyes. It puts her back on the road to recovery. It is a different story that the artist who draws the painting dies but not before creating his final masterpiece.

Nature itself is the best physician

— Hippocrates

5. Talk It Out

Underrated but still the most cathartic is to connect with another human on a deeper level and voice out your thoughts. This could be to a loved one, your family, your well-wishers, someone that you could trust, a true friend or even a counsellor.

Unburdening your pent-up thoughts, worries, fears, insecurities - no matter how silly or insignificant they may seem - can lighten your system. Most times, it can be extremely reassuring to hear another human voice and a source of great solace and strength. Do not deprive yourself by keeping your feelings to yourself and crowding your head with the heavyweight of your feelings.

You might also be unwittingly helping another when you express. Express and be a sounding board for others as well.


Word of caution: Ensure social distancing while connecting and social bonding.

“Talk. Release. Lighten.”

6.Pen Your Thoughts

Whenever a negative thought in any of its many tricky incarnations – worry, fear, anxiety, anger, helplessness- flits across your mind, as is extremely likely in times like this, pen it down. One simple, effective way to deal with it is to maintain a journal. A Journal is your very own personal, non-judgemental space.

For example, start writing down your worries. The mind is always scared of the unknown. Writing thoughts down makes them tangible and gives much needed clarity. Ramble on. Add different section

- What would your parents suggest?

- What would your friends suggest?

- What suggestion would your famous superhero /icon give in such a situation

- One year from now, would the worry mean anything at all?

This exercise can be a source of wonderful insights and a relaxed mind.

“Writing is a balm to the soul”.

Write away!!!!
Write away!!!! | Source


When life gets too complex and complicated, go back to the basics and seek strength and solace in the simple.Using these 6 sutras create your own ocean of calm. Practise and see which resonates most with you. And then when the worry clouds begin to make an appearance, immediately employ the sutra that works best for you.The journey ahead is long and uncertain and calmness is both a trusted ally and a key weapon.

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    • SAQIB6608 profile image

      SAQIB 

      11 hours ago from HYDERABAD PAKISTAN

      Nice, These are indeed challenging times. some good ideas mentioned above. I personally think hope is the key. so is keeping yourself busy and contended

      cheers.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 

      2 days ago from london

      I dedicated the poem to you because I felt you love nature. You really seem to do so. Cool!

      Some really inspirational and necessary tools for living in this current time. Keep it up!

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      3 days ago from Bengaluru

      Sharma ji, thank you for highlighting what was of particular interest to you. I have found that when I read an article one or two things really resonate and that is all I need. Happy to know that this article resonated with you.

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      12 days ago from Bengaluru

      Hi Sneha! Thanks for that lovely comment. Once the lockdown is lifted, we will be busier than before so whatever relaxation we can afford , we should.

    • shreekrishna sharma profile image

      SHREEKRISHNA SHARMA HALEMANE 

      12 days ago from MANGALORE

      Thank you Sowrabh for your article on how to stay calm during the situation of Covid-19 pandemic. I like the very inspiring sentence “If you could do it as a child, there is a stronger reason to do it with more aplomb now”. All the six steps are very practical and one can follow easily and could come out of anxiety.

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      2 weeks ago from Bengaluru

      Hi Vikram! Thanks for your wishes. Hasn’t it happened that you were angry and decided to take a pen and a paper and write it all down. Didn’t you feel better at the end. That’s why it is said that writing is a balm to the soul.

    • Sneha Bhat profile image

      Sneha Bhat 

      2 weeks ago from India

      Thank you madam for this article. Yes its a time where we can relax ourselves and spend some fruitful time with our family.

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      3 weeks ago from Bengaluru

      Thank you Bhatji, you are right that this period has opened up

      many fertile minds. Thanks for your encouragement . Deeply touched.

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      3 weeks ago from Bengaluru

      Hi Umaji, thank you for that’s lovely comment. Yes ,you are right! I hope that the whole world takes this challenging time in its stride.

    • Nisha Nair04 profile image

      Nisha Nair04 

      4 weeks ago

      Very nice article you have presented here. Your tips will help us in this lockdown period. Expect more articles from you.

    • Niks007 profile image

      Niks 

      5 weeks ago from India

      This article will definitely motivate readers to spend some quality time in this period of lockdown. The quotes in between are really very inspiring. Your style of writing is impressive. Keep up the good work!

    • talesofvikram profile image

      Vikram Brahma 

      5 weeks ago from Assam, India

      Hey I just read your article and writing is a balm to the soul is something new I heard for the first time. Congratulations to you for sharing your first article on HubPages, looking forward to reading more of your articles.

    • profile image

      P Narayana Bhat 

      5 weeks ago

      Superb article. Very articulate and rich in content. The chapter on mindfulness stands apart.Covid -19 has indeed opened up many fertile minds to explore unhindered imagination. Well done. Keep writing

      Looking forward to more such gems from your chest

    • profile image

      Uma.V 

      5 weeks ago

      Great work... Very well done..

      We really need to connect to our nature and go back down the memory lane..Explore the beauty of connecting

      to our past...Connecting ourselves in many other ways to over come the fear and the anxiety.Let the whole world take this challenging time in a best stride.. All the best...

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      5 weeks ago from Bengaluru

      What a delight it is to hear from you !Didnt know that you have a blog as well ...really interested in your heritage site ..This too shall pass ... so right you are on that .. my next piece includes that incidentally .. feeling motivated thanks to your comment..

    • Jayarama Somayaji profile image

      Jayarama Somayaji 

      5 weeks ago

      Nice article Sourabh. Down the memory lane is particularly liked as I am already doing it with photos, my blog, and Heritage site. "This will pass" is message for the present days of lockdown. Stay Home, stay safe.

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      5 weeks ago from Bengaluru

      Thank you so much Prateek for your very encouraging words. Really motivates me to write better. Glad that you liked the concept of mindfulness. Mindfulness can totally free us.Keep coming back for more!

    • PrateekJain24 profile image

      Prateek Jain 

      5 weeks ago from Madhya Pradesh, India

      A well written article which guides us on how to control our emotions and what are the better ways to deal with this Covid-19 pandemic Strom. I liked your concept of mindfulness. Like you told to live in present and make present our priority. Really appreciate your efforts in explaining the situation very well. Looking forward for your more articles. Keep writing mam. Thank you for sharing this valuable information with us.

    • profile image

      Kumar m n 

      6 weeks ago

      Madam, very nicely written. It is very useful and worth reading.

    • profile image

      Anuradha chiripal 

      6 weeks ago

      Well written

      My good wishes n blessings r always for

      Lots of love

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      6 weeks ago from Bengaluru

      Thank you Nitin Sir. I hope we all learn the right lessons from this pandemic and have a better future.

    • Sowrabha Mahesh profile imageAUTHOR

      sowspeaks 

      6 weeks ago from Bengaluru

      thank you so much for those encouraging words. And thanks for bringing attention to "being contented" ...absolutely right.

    • profile image

      Mahesh 

      6 weeks ago

      Well articulated. Keep it up.

      Looking forward for more articles from this author

    • nitinkhaire profile image

      Nitin Khaire 

      6 weeks ago from Mumbai

      Nice article Sowrabha. It is well timed to provide succour to many troubled souls in these days of fear and uncertainty. You're right, life is basically very simple but we have complicated it beyond measure. It's time to get back to the basics. We need to get our priorities right and live a simple, minimalistic life. Your article will help the reader to do exactly that.

    • hmkrishna profile image

      Halemane Muralikrishna 

      6 weeks ago from South India

      Very good attempt, Ms Sowrabha, you've made a systematic effort to keep everyone engaged with time-tested formulas. One more thing is to get prepared to live a contented life in the post-COVID-19 resource-limited environment. Your article has familiarised us a mature writer within you.

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