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SAFE RETURN TO CAMPUS

As part of Mason's Safe Return to Campus Plan, all classes and associated instructional activities—including final exams—will be conducted virtually beginning November 30, while most campus facilities will remain open. Visit Mason’s Safe Return to Campus Plan for COVID-19 updates.

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Focus on your horizon

One of my greatest pleasures in life is hiking.  I love being on the trail, with the ability to breathe and be completely absorbed in the wonders around me.  I love being on track to get to that wondrous place.  In doing so, my thoughts are always:  pick a point on the horizon and keep your eyes on it.  It does work, and I will often fanatically keep my eye out on the horizon, avoiding any conversations or distractions that break the connection.

I’ve thought about this a lot over the past week while we are in a topsy-turvy, disorienting journey. As it becomes clear that the U.S. election will not be fully resolved any time soon and COVID-19 is spiking strongly again in many communities, I feel like I need to pick a point on the horizon to help me walk steady. 

My long-term view is that we are peace-makers.  My entry point into peace-making is to help sustain the natural world that we all need for our lives to be abundant and secure, and to be surrounded by beauty.  Nothing could be more motivating than seeing a point in the future with leadership that unifies us with each other and with nature.

What’s your point on the horizon?  Stop just for a moment to visualize it; maybe it’s about family or your own life dreams. Perhaps it’s about your work. Whatever it may be, picture it fully and strongly, so that you can pull it out when the journey is disorienting.

 You might even give yourself some time for reconnecting to a point on the horizon. Whether it be a walk in the woods or around the block with your dog, or putting down your device to share a cup of coffee and chat with your partner, from a wellness perspective, it is good to make and take the time to reconnect to your ‘horizon’ and create a safe space.

 I’ll leave you with this Navajo prayer that I hope will also help create a safe space around you.  

With beauty behind me may I walk. With beauty below me may I walk. With beauty above me may I walk. With beauty all around me may I walk.