This pandemic is bringing out the best in some of us, but also the worst in many of us. Being a Holistic Wellness Coach and Practitioner, I see two things happening. Some of us are using this as an opportunity for growth and pursuing our passions or taking the time to bond with our kids and family pausing our busy lives. Others are choosing to allow fear, anxiety, depression, anger, or other negative emotions to take over and sabotage their minds. They feel like they have no other choice, although there’s always a choice. The choice is within you to decide how you are going to take responsibility for yourself in any situation.
Here Are 5 Ways We Can Heal Our Country by Healing Ourselves:
Recognize That You Can Make an Impact
You know the saying that goes, “the first step to solving a problem is admitting you have one.” Well, the first step we can take to proactively help heal our country is to realize we can each make a difference. Even small differences count. It is easy to watch the news every day and become complacent. It is easy to say, “what can I do about this?” We must break past that overwhelming feeling of defeat and empower ourselves from within, that yes, we can do something. Maybe you won’t change the world all by yourself, but you can surely be the catalyst that causes a ripple effect in the world and make a big impact on everyone.
I think humans play it small, a lot. You see a country with billions of people and wonder how one person can make an impact. We doubt our significance and contributions. By pushing past that doubt and “smallness,” we can begin to take steps to make a change. Listen, we are all here at the same time in the same place called Earth for a reason. The more we can tune into that and work collectively to lift each other up, the stronger we will all be together.
Listen to Your Heart
The second step is to listen to your heart and find your pain points. What breaks your heart? What are the things that make you shake your head? Clearly, your heart is being touched for a reason. It is like a spark or kindling to a small flame. You only really see the spark once you’ve acknowledged that you can make a difference. For me, a woman leader in cyber, I recognized there weren’t very many female attendees at online conferences. I knew women had a lot they could bring to the table. Their absence bothered me, so I set out to do something about it. When asked to present at a conference, I chose a topic close to my heart: elevating women in the cyber field. I was told I’d be speaking in front of a room full of men. My response? Exactly.
Have Open and Honest Conversations, Even When It Hurts
Once you’ve overcome your sense of “smallness” and understand the pain points, those things about our country that make your heartbreak, it is time to take action. Who can you speak to about the pain and suffering you’re witnessing? If your pain point is rooted in systemic racism, find ways you can talk about this pain and process it. If you’re heartbroken by gun violence, is there someone in your immediate social circle or family you can discuss your feelings with? By starting with your most intimate social circle, these conversations will eventually radiate out toward communities and even legislators. But, you have to start in your own home first.
These are hard topics to discuss and not everyone will agree with your point of view or your thoughts. That’s ok. You can always find common ground in what everyone can agree on. Can we all agree that everyone should be treated equally or that humans are meant to live peacefully, not kill each other? Start there. Then, stay curious, open-minded, and flexible in hearing the opinions of others. We all have different experiences, cultural values, beliefs, and many other factors that make us who we are, which is what makes us each unique. So, pause in the moment if someone disagrees with something you say, and instead of getting angry or frustrated, get curious.
Rally Your Tribe
You are not the only one hurting. Find people who hurt along with you and join hands. Amplified voices are louder. Consider joining a protest for your cause. Sponsor a letter-writing or call-a-thon campaign to your local leaders. Create a small community action network in your neighborhood to combat the shared pain point. Find your friends on this journey and work with them. Social media is a great tool to find like-minded individuals who share in your pain. Use your platform to connect and collaborate on ideas.
Don’t Get Discouraged
It took a long time for our country to become what it is today, the good, the bad, and yes, the ugly. Know that it may take a long time to heal as well. Don’t get discouraged if your efforts go unnoticed. Don’t give up if you host a meeting and only three people show up. Don’t stop calling your legislators even if they always go to voicemail. Persistence makes progress and when your heart is in it, you will see your impact.
It took us hundreds of years to get here. We are not going to resolve anything overnight if we want lasting change. However, every little bit counts, and you have to get very clear on your “why.” That is what will keep YOU going, even if others drop out.
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