The psychological impact of COVID is likely to take far longer to recover from, than the virus itself.

I passed a group of hikers who were moving slowly on this trail… all of them wearing masks.

And my heart hurt.

Because the whole mask issue has become yet another way in which fear — and its close friend, control — have risen up in monumental ways, further disconnecting people from their authentic essence and capacity to discern what’s right for them in any given moment.

Even just seeing the word “mask”, check in… are you already hunting for clues, wondering if I’m going to write my opinion which will reveal “which side is she on” so you can categorize whether I’m an “us” or “them” related to your preferred values?

Or perhaps you’re subconsciously scanning for safety — will my tone allow you to feel safe in having your perspective, even if it’s different from mine? (Or will you need to unsubscribe? 🙂

This is my point. Everything continues to become more polarized, with every microscopic behavior becoming fodder for judgment and separation, to rally those who think like “us” to oppose those who don’t, with little care given to creating spaces in which it’s allowed and supported to have differences in perspective.

And the cycle continues. We like to think we’ve evolved past the dark ages, but this aspect of the human psyche comes down to “Me right. You wrong.” Which is as primitive as it gets.

Anyway. Back to the trail. What would have to be in place, in someone’s psychology, to choose breathing one’s own carbon dioxide at an elevation of 9000′ above sea level, rather than feeling free to enjoy the mountain air?

I found myself wanting to walk a mile in their shoes (ok, that’s a lie. Maybe just a step. Then I’m back to my own shoes, thanks.) — but by the time it occurred to me to ask them, or even think of how I’d ask, I was far up the trail.

There are so many factors that cause humans to live from rigidly prescribed rules rather than honoring the intelligence of our own authentic essence.

Some people are using the “moral authority” argument for mask wearing, as being the right thing to do for the good of all.

Some people are arguing that masks deny us our individual freedom of choice.

Guess what. Both sides can be true.

But not everyone has the capacity to hold paradox and live in the complexity of multiple truths coexisting.

So rules, laws, and “shoulds” emerge, in an attempt to get one set of values to dominate the other, and now here we are back into dominance and control as our way of relating with each other.

I consider myself to be very blessed in that most people in my world have at least some capacity to hold paradox (or a lot!) or at least be open to the possibility of it. But perhaps the people in your world do not, and you have to make an executive decision on what policies to put in place for your workplace, for example. Do what you have to do.

But chances are, you have some awareness that this dualistic perspective of right/wrong is not the whole conversation. And perhaps you have a desire to evolve yourself into one that can hold even more complexity with compassion, ferocity as needed, and grace.

The key is to become so plugged into your own Source and the quantum field of infinite intelligence , that you’re no longer making decisions from rigid personality structures but rather from the knowing of what is called for in the moment.

In this moment, wear a mask. In this moment, don’t. In this moment, be kind and listen. In this moment, bring anger and directness.

The point is not for one side to “win.” The moment you are operating from some rule set that’s not coming from your inner compass in the moment, is the moment you’ve lost the plot (in ALL areas of your life!).

The point is to be fluidly attuned to what’s needed in the moment and be able to respond with grace or ferocity or whatever the moment calls for.

The virus itself will come and go for as long as it’s going to go. But the ramifications of masks and social distancing will leave a tremendous scar on the collective psyche.

Nobody knows who to trust, or what can be trusted. Even to the point of feeling unable to trust the mountain air at 9000′ elevation.

This erosion of trust is the real virus.

And the more we perpetuate “us/them” thinking within ourselves, the longer it will take our world to heal.

What if the greatest contribution you could make to the healing of our world, would be to notice how much of your energy and attention goes into judgment, control, or worry, and shift that ratio into more trust of self, trust in life, and creating more flow?

If even a small percentage of the population leverages the Covid era to transcend the habit of dualistic thinking, there may be hope for us all.

If these are the kinds of inquiries that move your soul, I’d love to have you join me for 12 weeks of embodying higher consciousness, deepening resilience and trust, and evolving ourselves to evolve the whole. The Game of Life program starts this month; all the details are at www.annerosehart.com/gameoflife.

In the meantime, slow down, tune in… what’s your deeper truth in this moment? And this one? There’s space for all of it to be deeply trustable, no matter how it looks on the surface.