In the wake of so much devastation, the easy thing to do is to disengage.
I’ve seen many posts on social media over the past few weeks (and beyond) sharing that it’s all just ‘too much’. To cope, many heart-centred people decide to stop watching the news, quickly scroll past uncomfortable posts on Facebook and turn their attention away.
It seems a justifiable act of self-care when faced with the truth of our world – a world that seems to be on fire lately.
I get that. I’ve wanted to turn it all off MANY times over the past month.
We all have an individual and collective responsibility to pay attention. To educate ourselves. To speak up. To get uncomfortable. To check our biases. To do something.
Yes, it’s hard. So terribly hard.
And it’s easier to say, “I don’t know what to do” and then do nothing. It’s easier to feel sad and send love for a few days and then get on with our lives.
But what a position of privilege we are in to be able to do that! Not everyone is so lucky.
Yes, you must take care of yourself. You don’t need to feed your psyche with a 24/7 stream of tragedy or you’ll burn out and be unable to offer anything.
But self-care and personal responsibility are not mutually exclusive. You can take care of yourself AND take action. You can enjoy a beautiful summer day with your kids AND then come back to the hard conversations. You can promote your business AND fight for justice. You can post puppy memes on Facebook AND ask yourself some hard questions.
And if you need support to keep going, here’s a great post filled with resources for change-makers.
This goes for me too. I’ve felt heartsick and hopeless lately. And I don’t love those feelings, so I’ve had to catch myself starting to disengage and turn away instead of toward the issues that confront our world.
I haven’t spoken up enough. I haven’t done enough.
But as I look at my two beautiful kids and wonder about what kind of world they are growing up in, I cannot turn my back on the issues just because they aren’t on my doorstep or because they make me feel sad.
I don’t have all the solutions (none of us do). I’m still figuring out what actions I can personally take, and I’ll share as I get clearer.
What I do know is that the world needs more heart-centred people willing to join and stay in the conversation – even when it hurts.