Step 1: The Expansion Principle
Step 2: Moving from Loss to Renewal
Step 3: Crisis as catalyst to empowerment and strength
“Commit to wholeness and uplift rather than decline and distress.”
A crisis does not automatically make a person stronger. Some individuals decline and amass distress into their physical, mental, emotional, and energetic systems. Yet their outcomes do not need to be this way. Have you wondered what sets people in different directions, even experiencing similar events?
When I was younger, I believed that a lot of people’s problems, responses, and creations came from their situation; events or context were the primary drivers of their actions. Now, I see it quite the opposite. Inner patterns create BOTH situations and responses, usually in some sort of feedback loop.
In other words, a crisis does not “create” many of people’s responses and results. Instead, unexpected, uncertain, or intense situations tend to reveal or magnify long-standing patterns.
While I am compassionate and sympathetic to the daily challenges that so many face, I do not expect those challenges to go away (for very long) when the “outer” situation changes. More likely than not, the same drama will be re-created in a new time, place, or with different people.
Therefore, when I say “commit to wholeness and elevation,” I am not suggesting to focus primarily upon your outer circumstances. Rather, the imperative is to examine your (inner) patterns of response, and what brought you to this experience. Upon reflection, there is usually a line of decisions and actions leading to “now.”
Recognizing this pathway of creation does NOT equate to self-blame. There is no benefit to self-flagellation over self-recognition of choices. People constantly waste precious time comparing themselves to elusive standards and cycle in issues of self-worth and self-disappointment.
Essentially, if you do not want to repeat or continue an experience, then you need to have some understanding of how it was created. (This applies to many scales, individual to planetary.) With this understanding, you can take effective action to become more clear, strong, and whole in your creative capacity.
Much can be said about the process of (self) responsibility; I encourage you to read this article for a deeper examination.
My key point here is that you cannot believe that events “happened to you” AND embrace a position of self-empowerment. When you see your (unconscious) choices in the creative flow of life, you harness massive energy to (consciously) direct towards your desired outcomes. If you identify and transform a fundamental pattern, then the “change” permeates all aspects of life, not just temporarily for a particular situation. This is much more constructive, enduring, and genuine uplift.
Of course, in large-scale situations, when others make decisions that affect your daily life, such as the role of government quarantines and closures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, you did not “create” many of the impacts. However, it is still true that many choices lead to a particular situation for yourself when a crisis occurs. Many “crises” are not so unpredictable if you are using expanded awareness (Step 1!) in your life all of the time. (Our home was stocked and we were “sheltering-in-place” well before the California state government shut down the San Francisco Bay Area in March 2020.)
Of all of the steps to empowerment during and after a crisis, I have found this article the most challenging to write because I do not wish readers to feel criticized or blamed for their circumstances. However, I would not be not offering you honest service if I did not remind you how much you can anticipate, create, and elevate by taking empowered responsibility for the unfolding of your life.
It has become harder to make these points because many would rather think or talk about self-empowerment instead of truly engaging with their own choices, and take meaningful steps to elevate their situations. A cultural tendency to “look good, feel good” as quickly as possible has become pervasive. Superficial recommendations and short-term fixes often sidetrack people from core changes.
You have so much more potential to realize by going deeper. That being said, it takes ongoing focus, energy, and effort to be an empowered person in a culture overflowing with blame, narcissism, and avoidance.
Volumes can be written about the many practices and pathways to inner wholeness once you make the choice to deepen the genuine creative capacity of your life. My emphasis here is to be proactive and conscious in your commitment to become stronger and enriched, rather than diminished, by the crisis, disruption, or disaster that you have experienced.
Ultimately, neither elevation nor decline are inevitable during or after a crisis — both require choice of direction. Returning to my initial question, different outcomes from a crisis originate from key decisions and patterns of response. If you have not already consciously committed to take the path of elevation and wholeness, then you have a second chance. Right now.
In all moments, your life is an evolving palette of creative potential. Choose your next paints and brush strokes wisely. I personally suggest seeking rainbow hues instead of blacks, browns, and greys.
Launch yourself into an uplifted future
No matter where you are right now, you can make powerful, direct choices to create a better future for yourself and those around you. Faced with the ideas, energies, and events around you, you can lead or you can follow, in very tangible ways.
You can make a conscious choice to expand rather than contract.
You can point yourself, and others, towards renewal or a dead end.
You can embrace self-empowerment with a commitment to become more clear, whole, and filled with sovereign creative capacity.
In a time of crisis, there is compelling need for voices of calm, clarity, and thoughtful response amidst the cacophony. You have the opportunity to offer beauty, peace, and inner stillness to those around you, to remind them of the possibility, and see the alternatives. As you work through each of the three steps, your reality will transform. Strength, hope, clarity, and elevated creations will come. You can make the key choices and walk away from disaster, and towards renewal and uplift, for the benefit of all beings.