Holistic Divorce Counseling

Holistic Divorce Counseling Nicole S. Urdang, M.S., NCC, DHM, LMHC. Free support, resources, and comfort for all life's issues and transitions.

A Buddhist and yogic response to COVID-19 March 30, 2020


Here are two practices, one from Buddhist tradition and one from yoga, to help you feel a sense of agency during this unusual time and to send out loving kindness to everyone who might be suffering.


Tonglen, as described by the Buddhist teacher Pema Chodron, encourages you to:

Feel your discomfort, anxiety or pain, emotionally and wherever you can find it in your body.

Send yourself loving kindness and compassion.

Think of all the other people in the world who might be suffering just as you are right now..

Breathe in their pain. (If you’re a highly sensitive person or an empath, this may feel like too much. If that’s true for you, skip this step.)

Send them love and compassion.

The practice is done slowly, deliberately, and with an open heart towards yourself and others. It’s a beautiful meditation that connects us in a time of disconnection.



The yogic practice uses the mantra:

Lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu.

One of the translations from the Sanskrit means:

May all beings be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life contribute in some way to that happiness and freedom for all.


If you choose the mantra practice, the classic way to use it is to either sing, chant, speak, whisper or think the mantra 108 times for 40 consecutive days.

You can count the number on a string of 108 mala beads, or two cycles of a 54 bead rosary, or just use your fingers.

This is a perfect time to experiment with new tools to help ground and support you.


Here’s a link to a YouTube video of the chant: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xn7mhcdAqzc


(If you love doing the mantra, please check out the whole mantra section on this site.)



Copyright Nicole S. Urdang


Staying emotionally strong and balanced during Covid-19 March 21, 2020


Clearly, this is an extremely stressful time. It’s also an opportunity to trust yourself and use all the tools you have practiced to cope in the past.


I have compiled a short list of things you can do to buoy your spirits, keep yourself physically healthy, and help others.


If you have Bach’s Rescue Remedy put a couple of drops in your water bottle every day or take one of the pastilles. It can only help calm your nervous system.


Don’t skip meals. If your blood sugar gets too low it affects your mood and you will be more prone to anxiety and irritability.


Catch up on sleep. Sleep helps raise your metabolism so you can process your food efficiently, helps your memory consolidate from the day before and gives you extra mental and physical energy to deal with change.


Discover the INSIGHT TIMER  app. I have a list of some of my favorite teachers in an earlier post. There are over 40,000 different meditations and talks available. They will definitely soothe your mind. This is a great time to try a walking meditation, either inside or outside your home. The app has a variety of short and long walking meditations to talk you through the experience.


Journaling, whether written or audio, can be great for releasing stress, counting your blessings or simply processing your reactions to what is going on.


Distract yourself. Whether it’s music, videos, reading, learning a new skill, practicing yoga, qi gong, taking a walk, calling a friend or relative, cleaning out your closets, tackling a household chore or doing anything else you’ve procrastinated with, being busy helps clear your mind and calm your nerves.


Help someone. If you can do a chore for somebody, if you can buy gift certificate to your favorite restaurant over the phone, if you can check in on someone and help them feel more connected, if you can simply be another person trying to get through this with the best attitude possible, you’re helping.


Thank everyone who’s working to keep things running. Reminding people they are appreciated gives them a reason to persevere and makes them feel useful. We can all be useful to each other. Isn’t that what we’re here for?


If you’re feeling anxious, notice what you’re telling yourself. In a time like this it’s all too easy to start catastrophizing. Please remember: You have been through myriad challenges before. If you’re here reading this you’re resilient. You survived. It may not have been pleasant. You may not have liked it. But you got through it. 


Last but not least, be grateful. Do you have a roof over your head? Do you have food to eat? Those two things alone a reason to celebrate in a time like this. So many people are in dire straits. Start noticing every little thing you have to feel grateful for. Is the water running? Is the heat working? Do you have a book to read? Do you have the Internet? Can you open the door and breathe some fresh air? (And, if you’re sick of being grateful check this out: https://holisticdivorce.wordpress.com/2020/05/05/sick-of-your-gratitude-practice-try-this/)


This will pass. Everything since the history of time has. We will rebuild, recoup and recover. Have faith in yourself and everyone else. It’s time to unite and start trusting each other again.



Copyright Nicole S. Urdang


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