Mindful Gratitude for Our Bodies


It may be time for all of us to take a deep breath. Breathing in……and out……we notice the miracle of our breath. The Coronavirus makes it more difficult to breathe and there is plenty of hand wringing regarding the dangers of the virus. Perhaps instead of hand wringing, we could start hand washing and pay attention to how it feels to wash our hands. Feeling the warm water and the soap on our skin feels good, right? Consider what a miracle it is to have hands that allow us to do so much; pick up, hold and carry things, cook, draw, turn pages, sew, hold a tennis racquet and so much more. The dexterity of our fingers is something to behold.

When you finish washing your hands, you will probably want to move to another place. How about walking? Isn’t it amazing that for most of us, our brains send messages to our bodies and our legs and feet move us from one place to another? Our bones and muscles enable us to climb stairs, hike, and run. Isn’t that a miracle?

And the fact that you see these words and your brain interprets and understands them is quite amazing, don’t you think?

It makes sense that we make wise choices and take care of our well-being and the well-being of others during this COVID-19 crisis. However, instead of perseverating over worse-case scenarios, try breathing in….and out…. and appreciate how well our bodies work most of the time. Can we decrease our to do lists and our self-importance to stay safe and keep others safe? Let’s support each other by social distancing; while also connecting with neighbors to make sure others have what they need during this difficult time.

And what about the larger community? Should we spend a few minutes calling lawmakers encouraging them to delegate government resources to people who are ill but cannot afford to stay home?

Finally, the experts suggest the only thing that will curtail this pandemic is social distancing. So, if we’re privileged enough to participate in social distancing let’s take the opportunity to slow down in our own environments. Perhaps we could look inward more…find more gratitude……maybe we can even give time to the people we live with (who might normally get very little of us).

Mindfully wash your hands, spend time with loved ones, check on your neighbors and breathe deeply. There is evidence that practicing mindfulness improves immune systems. https://health.clevelandclinic.org/how-mindfulness-training-can-help-you-achieve-immunologic-health/. So, when you finish reading this, take a few deep breaths and relish in the joy of doing so.

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