I’ve been thinking about fear in our world. A few examples could be getting the virus, sending kids to school, not getting to vote, the wrong guy getting elected, depleted savings, unpaid bills, losing jobs, being evicted, losing someone to death, or lack of healthcare. Fears are real, and the lists are long.
Fear is reasonable and often keeps us from walking into danger or doing something stupid. But an overload of concern, like we are experiencing these days, can contribute to anxiety and depression, low levels of both, which are normal. The challenge is to keep them from growing out of control. Fear, anxiety, and depression shows up in many different behaviors. I’ve noticed low energy, more irritability, less compliance, more definite opinions, and less patience. I fear not just for myself and my husband, but my kids and grandkids. I also fear for the heart of America and anyone who lost their means of earning an income.
Fear can also show up in risky behavior, like, “What the heck. How does it matter anyway?” I think it is the root behind protests, rallies, and refusal to follow recommended or mandated masks and distancing.
Blah, Blah, Blah. Don’t we get tired of hearing it? Yes, I certainly do. We need solutions, not reminders:
Shut off the news.
Move your body.
Eat colorful food.
Talk to pleasant people.
Block negative or conspiracy theory posts.
Get enough sleep.
Select what you put in your mind.
Something what helps me is listening to audiobooks. I can use an earbud all day and get engrossed in a good story instead of hearing continual politics, COVID numbers, and families grieving—those cause my fear to escalate. I have moderate anxiety, and nothing helps more than controlling my thoughts. It is the only thing I have power over 100% of the time. The loss of control, which is what we live in the present time, increases our fear, anxiety, and depression.
Put your body in motion and feel less fear. It works like magic and doesn’t cost a dime. Play outside games with your kids, run through the sprinkler, or play the old game of Annie Annie Over. Be creative. Volunteer at the schools—teachers could use support and help. Couples join hands and take a walk. I’m going to find a way to help with counting ballots for the election.
Don’t just sit around listening to the same negativity and feeling stressed and sad. Do something. A busy body calms a troubled mind. It’s true.
Until the next time: Live while you live.
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