“You don’t build a bond without being present.”  

 –James Earl Jones

Normally a high energy, motivated person, I am discovering a new way of being after experiencing initial surges of creativity from staying home since the pandemic exploded.


I call it “floating.” The motivation to complete my new website under development is gone (hopefully temporarily). Briskly paced hikes of five to seven miles are replaced with meandering lakeside walks of four miles that may last two to three hours. There is no rush to get the adrenaline going or my body moving.

Instead, I hear the birds sing, notice the different shades of green on trees coming to new life this spring, and send prayers to my loved ones—not panic prayers, but thoughts of goodness, forgiveness, kindness and generosity.

Flashbacks of my happiest times in life come forth, and I recall conversations with those who passed, including my dad. He was so much wiser than I understood as a younger version of myself. I remember simple insights, like when I asked him once how he deals with the challenges in his life, he responded: “Everyone has a cross to bear.” His adversities were much greater than his always-smiling face showed.

If only we approached one another assuming that we each are dealing the best we can with whatever is in front of us — or beneath our exterior presence.

As I “float” through my day, I appreciate how good food tastes (even the meals I make, and I am NOT a great cook). Tonight, as I write this, I have my window open, listening to the rain outside with soft jazz music playing in the background. I am even hoping it rains tomorrow so I can give myself another guilt-free, “jammie day” inside to just be, do nothing, except rest and refuel.

I know I am fortunate to be an introvert in these challenging times, but I still need people. My daily phone conversations are so much richer, distilled down to what really matters in this moment, than they were months before. The pulse on what is happening externally changes each day.

Yesterday, one of my friends in Arizona shared a perspective from an acquaintance. This acquaintance said to her, about the new state-at-home orders occurring across the country, “Maybe the coronavirus is nature’s way of telling us to go to our rooms, as if we had done something bad.” Thinking about that statement as I continued to float, I realized perhaps her friend is right. We have NOT treated this Earth well. There are stories now, since people have been called to stay at home, of pollution dramatically dropping and wildlife appearing in places where it has not been in a long while.

And, whether you are religious or not, you can choose to be open to hearing this beautiful message from the pope here, which shows that acquaintance’s insights are not so far-fetched.

Had I been in a busy, more urgent state of mind, I may not have taken time to ponder my friend’s conversation further–or to even read something from the pope, as I am not Catholic. With reflection, I came to see how much I want to be part of the change in this world to create a cleaner, safer environment for my children and generations to follow.

Floating has brought me peace beyond other ways I used in the past to “surrender” outcomes. I am more aware of enriching additions to my life like thoughtful connectedness, greater presence and welcoming right timing of things- versus focusing on the often challenging task of letting go.

I also am claiming the song I first learned to play on the piano as my new mantra on the days I find myself floating. (My poor older brother heard the song played so many times he would probably scream if I ever played it again.)

That song is Que Sera, Sera, based on a Spanish phrase which means, “Whatever will be, will be.”

Trusting in the goodness of life amidst its challenges, I wish you peaceful moments of floating as our new world unfolds.


With love and blessings,



P.S.—If you are looking for a way to get more grounded and hopeful during these uncertain times, enroll in this free meditation series from Oprah and Deepak Chopra here.


I took the above photograph of these paddleboats “floating in stillness” next to the Old Reedy Creek Trailhead, Cary, N.C., while hiking one day.




Share this post

  • Lisa Franklin says:

    Gail, your insight is spot on as is your friends! Since January, I’ve been saying this is our first strike–God wants us to come together in Love, Peace and most of all Unity! So now, we are forced to do the right thing…no hesitation.

    The health professionals being forced into the scariest times of their lives without hesitation, and they are the true heroes! And I pray every day for their well-being. Thank you for reminding all of us to enjoy the simple things in life.

    Finally, your talents are endless…love the photo above!

    • Gail Kauranen Jones says:

      Lisa: Your heart for others continues to shine through. Someone told me you did a candle vigil for healthcare workers last night. Bless you for being so proactive in lifting us all to light and hope-and thank you for your kind comments. With deep gratitude, Gail

  • Bev Wax says:

    Hi Gail,

    I agree with you! And meditation has really helped me in this difficult times. In fact, I have signed up for and have been listening to Deepak’s and Oprah’s free meditation series. Another meditation I’m doing is from Dr. Joe Dispenza, author of “Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself” and two other books. He’s very intense! Have done other guided meditations as well.

    • Gail Kauranen Jones says:

      Great Bev: Glad you signed up…those Oprah/Deepak meditations are specific to “Hope in time of uncertainty” and only take 24-minutes a day. Dr. Joe Dispenza, with whom I trained as most of my clients know, has a slew of other meditations in addition to the excellent one you mentioned. Some are less intense and geared directly to healing the body and keeping the mind elevated. There is also another great meditation from Dr. Ann Webster, Harvard psychologist, directed at healing the body and keeping the mind calm. We used this daily in the three-month Mind Body Program for Cancer at Massachusetts General Hospital, in which I participated. That CD is called Creating a New ‘Now.’ I also can not emphasize enough the healing powers of EFT, especially when done with a trained professional like myself…It can quite rapidly release stress and trauma and relax the central nervous system–which bolsters the immune system. The key is use very specific phrases geared to your own state of mind and fears/concerns/traumas, etc. Someone who can customize the work to your situation can accelerate the healing.

      If there is one key message I’d love everyone to understand right now in this “time of floating” is this: Use this new, expanded space of solitude to rewire your brain for NEW EMPOWERING BELIEFS. We all must be vigilant about challenging fear thoughts (especially when we have too much time to think), and focus instead on what we want, and send loving thoughts to ourselves and others. If we stop resisting this inner time and see it instead as period for discovering ourselves and treasures (and to release past ways of being that no longer serve our highest good) we will look back with gratitude for all of who we have become…and may we use that new elevated state of being to serve others, and help make this world a better place to live. Congrats for doing the courageous, inner work, Bev. Blessings, Gail

  • >