The current chaotic events in our world are nothing new. In the history of human existence, there have been pandemics and political unrest. There has been inequality and injustice, as well as war and economic crisis.
Of course, the fact that civilization has recovered from some of these things isn’t much comfort in the here and now. It all can feel overwhelming, can make us feel afraid, can affect our ability to live life as well as we could despite the times.
How can we feel at peace, when every day seems to bring something new for us to worry about?
Anxiety is a legitimate emotional and physical reaction to stress factors such as the ones currently dominating your news feed.
Your body and mind are programmed to stay alert when you encounter danger. It’s a survival instinct. The symptoms of anxiety have actually protected humankind from predators, injury, and other risks since the beginning of our existence.
It’s okay to feel anxious. The first step in dealing with it is to accept those emotions. Don’t feel bad about going through it or compare yourself to others when it comes to coping.
It’s important to remember how much power your thoughts have. When you constantly fret over situations you have little or no control over, you waste energy and the opportunity to live happily in the present.
Yes, whatever you worry about is relevant because it impacts your future, your safety, and your health. It’s reasonable to care deeply about that. If you do everything you can, though, you’re doing enough to address your concerns (regardless of what happens).
That may not be very comforting but think of it this way. When you vote, take precautions to protect your health, take action in your community, and show love to others, you’re doing all you really can. Beyond that, some things are out of your control.
Many aspects of life are this way, and it’s a lifelong process to release the need to control everything that happens to and around us. The fact that we can’t know the future or decide how each event, whether huge or mundane, affects us is the very mechanism by which we learn how to live meaningfully.
It probably seems counterintuitive, but it’s absolutely true.
You can’t learn anything or grow if you always anticipate failure or pain and avoid it accordingly. The beauty of love depends on the daily effort to give without any guarantee. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, adventure is defined as a verb meaning “exploration of unknown territory.”
It’s not always easy, but you can always find peace in the present moment.
Focus on what is good, what you can do, and the people you appreciate in your life. Think about the abundance of what you have. Each breath you take is a gift and an opportunity to have amazing experiences in the world.
When you choose to see life’s uncertainties as an opportunity and not a hindrance to happiness, you can connect with the small joys that exist all around you.
Release what you can’t control and revel in what is good, what is true, what is real right now.