Has the state of the world today filled you with stress that threatens to harm both your mental and physical health?
The horrors that men inflict upon one another are not a problem of modernity. The only new thing under the sun is the sheer volume and immediacy of information.
There was a sense of security in the not knowing, a feeling that formed a sort of protection from having to acknowledge painful reality.
The world is not really different, it is the informational bubble wrap that live streaming, news videos, and social media conversations have removed.
Though it is terribly difficult to watch and read, modern media may also be what we need to change things for the better.
We can no longer just plod along as if things are all fine and dandy, happily unaware of the problem. Now we know and are obligated to do something about it.
Outwardly, we may gather together to stand as a cohesive group of Mr. Rogers style Helpers, to say we will not tolerate this anymore and work to correct it. Proactive people helping others in great need have no time for depression or illness. So it is more important than ever to take care of you.
Help your inner self stand up to the stress with this Seven Step Recipe for a mindfully balanced life:
1. Read and watch enough news and social media to truly understand. Become informed. If you feel overwhelmed, step away from news for a while, not to hide, but to refresh.
2. Take some time each day to read a variety of books in different genres. Choose one book that is funny or light in nature and a second that is intellectually engaging.
3. Actively work to develop a new hobby that involves you physically and emotionally – I decided at the age of 60 to learn to knit. Maybe you will learn Sudoku or how to play the guitar.
4. Take an intellectual interest in nature. Learn how to grow orchids, or understand the musical patterns of the birds in your area. If you are so fortunate as to live by the sea – follow the travels of the orcas, find out why they do what they do. There is so much in the world that is good and it too should be studied.
5. Join with others for a shared activity. Follow a sports team, join a knitting group, or attend the opera. The world has a lot of very nice people in it. Find some and add your own fine self to the mix.
6. Spend some time each day in physical activity. What the activity is will be based upon your abilities. Walk around the block, drive to the park and walk or bike a trail, or put on a cd and follow your favorite exercise guru. If you are only able to walk from room to room, do so, and take a dust cloth with you for some proper reach and stretch. Don’t worry about heart rate or how many minutes each day. Just move.
7. Finally, at the start and end of each day – write down something positive about you. Did you choose a great breakfast? Did you sleep better? Were you prepared for a hard working day? Did you make someone happy? Did you do a very difficult thing, something to be proud of?
It takes effort to stay fully fleshed in the reality that is your personhood when the world seems to be falling apart. But you can. I have faith in you.
What will you do today in order to stay mentally and physically healthy?
Ps – It was not easy for me, but I did finally learn to knit a little.
Here is my first project as modeled by the Daughter of Spoon Mage™. It took a year and a half to complete, but I think it turned out well and am quite pleased and proud – nice feelings that help me stay grounded.