Monday, August 5, 2019

Mass Shootings: Discouraged? Encourage others!

Oh boy... how many times have I written here in this blog about how we should take care of ourselves after mass shootings.  Seems I hardly get going on other topics, and back we are again on the topic of dealing with the stress of yet another mass shooting, again!

I continue to hear from more and more people about how discouraged they are about these kinds of things and how they are worried about "the state of the world" and "the way humanity is going".  It seems people are losing confidence in one another and giving up on hope for the potential of human kind.

I've heard that the way to become less discouraged, is to encourage others.  I suppose the reason is because when you need to encourage someone else about something you yourself feel a bit discouraged over, you have to dig deep and challenge your own discouraged thinking in order to see the places where things could get better or don't have to go so poorly.

So let me help myself, by helping you with the best anti-discouragement message I can find as I dig deep into the creative juices of my sense of self in order to help you the reader to not give up hope on humanity during a time in which most of us are quite baffled about how poorly some human beings are behaving.

First of all, if you are feeling powerless about the state of things in this world, I encourage you to take a second look at that belief and realize that you have more ability and power than you realize to make a difference.  You don't have to tackle the largest problem on the planet or in your state or even your community, but you do have the power to do something more about the problems you feel powerless over than you care to admit.

Second, believing that the tiny bit you can do is meaningless, unimportant, insignificant and won't even be a drop in the bucket of needs on this planet is also a belief that will stop you from even making a move on the few things you are capable of doing, which could actually make a difference and even soften your discouragement.

Third, it's imperative that you recognize where you fall on the scale of consciousness in this world.  If you are fairly unconscious, with head down and your sights set only on how to survive from moment to moment, you may be simply taking care of your basic survival needs.  And that's fine!  But if you are one of the many on this planet who is privileged enough to be more conscious than that, with less of your "basic needs" unmet, capable of looking up from the grindstone, and are able to do more to change this world, then you need to take more responsibility for your place in this world and stop waiting for someone else to take the first step.

Finally, put an end to thinking that "doing something" can't be too small, or has to be huge.  As if only some enormously famous, outstanding, massive piece of work, progress, or accomplishment, will be worthwhile or help to change this world.  Writing this article is something.  Can you write?  Paint?  Volunteer?  Offer?  Create?  Teach?  Donate?  Support?  Can you encourage someone else?

If you are feeling stressed by the state of the world or feeling discouraged by the negative events of your fellow human beings, recognize that you have the power to do something rather than nothing.  Don't wait for someone else to create a to-do list for you.  Make your own list.  Make it positive!  Do something instead of nothing, and don't buy into the discouraging beliefs that might convince you to not even try, or to hang it all up and shake your head in despair.

If you are a lit candle, light the candle next to you.  If you are lit by another, then light someone else on fire.  If you are not able to burn, or light the wick of someone else, that's okay too.  Encourage those who can and don't feed the fire of discouragement.  Take a deep breath and realize these massive problems we face cannot be ignored.  We must stay resilient and strong in the face of them and though we may feel discouragement, don't let it take root and don't give it your power.

Thanks to Luigi Mengato for the great photo