Feeling stressed out since the election? I know I am. Emotions run high on all sides of the political spectrum. Facebook and other social media feel like venting pots for anger, grief, and blame. Petitions and calls to action fill my inbox.
Voicing our concerns and indignation is important, but I’ve had to pull back. I’m so burned out on politics that even when I hear speakers I love and trust, I click away before they have a chance to finish their impassioned sentences. For now, I’m done. I’m burnt. I’m fried. On overload. I have no room for any of it. I feel the drip-drip-drip like a slow leak in my life force. What I need most is to chill out. Laugh. Breathe. Unwind. Connect.
I’ve been proactive over the years. I’ve emailed the President and my representatives. I’ve received form letters back with a lot of blah blah blah that makes me feel I’m speaking to nobody.
Now I’m taking a different course of action — being proactive about my own wellbeing. My body sends me messages. I listen. It tells me to withdraw. Take care of myself. I don’t want it to feel it’s speaking into the air. If I respond with politically correct rhetoric, but don’t take action to back up my words, my body knows. It doesn’t understand words as much as action. When I push it down and don’t listen, it further withdraws. I feel it. The body isn’t punishing. It’s trying to protect me. It expects me to do the same by respecting its limitations and boundaries.
If I stay upset over that which I have no control, I won’t survive. There has always been ugliness in our world as there will undoubtedly be for all time. I have to pick my battles and let go of the rest. So I take inventory of my resources and decide how much I have to go around. I make sure I leave enough for myself because if I don’t, there will be nothing left.
I believe connection and compassion toward others on all sides is the beginning of healing. I refuse to demonize those who don’t think or feel as I do. We the people are far more complex than cartoon characters made up of good guys and bad guys. Most people are just trying to cope and do their best in their small corners of the world. Most want the same things for themselves and their families, even if they don’t agree on the best way to go about it.
It’s easy to see the world as a horrible place when chaos abounds in the world and our private lives. It’s not a balanced view, but I admit my vision has been skewed in that direction. I’m trying to refocus on what’s good and right and beautiful. It’s all around us, coexisting right along with the bad.
For my next post, I’ll finally share the photos I promised from my Hawaii trip two months ago. The beauty and peace of the islands was a welcome break. I could use more of that. For now, just envisioning the palm trees swaying in the wind makes me smile.