How to Cope When Political and World Events Stress You Out

Life is full of ups and downs where every day can present new challenges to hope, success and happiness. However, every once in a while, we are struck by something more powerful. It can even seem like the world hands out more punishment than we can handle. But, given time and effort and a little help you can cope with the emotional and mental stress.

Here are a few ways to reduce stress, anxiety or fear that can accompany sudden political change or world events.

Understand that Significant Change is Incremental

Don’t expect the world to get better all at once. Change most often occurs in bits and pieces, rarely manifesting as a single, colossal event. Whether you’re looking for positive social progress or fear sudden political movements, viewing change as incremental can lessen its impact. What happens slowly, frequently can be redirected successfully with the effort of a dedicated few.

Accept the Reality of Your Situation

Denial only perpetuates your sense of shock and anger, which act as constant reminders. These reminders force you to rehash the tragedy and relive all the nasty aspects of your experience. By accepting what you are feeling you can begin to cope with it. In dealing with the reality of the situation, you step outside of the mental loop and become empowered to actively alter it.

Rebel Against the Situation

Just because you accept what has happened doesn’t mean you can’t rebel against it. Acceptance is simply a means of understanding where you stand. Decide to push back. You can begin to fight for want you want. Continue to challenge your integrity by living the example you want to see in the world.

Call Yourself into Action

Sometimes, when we experience periods of enduring happiness, we can take for granted the value of what we possess. In our satisfaction, we may inadvertently let contentment lead to the type of complacency that misdirects progress. That being said, if you see something that is broken—fix it. Embrace your emotions and consume it as motivation to change the injustices you cannot tolerate. Engage in politics, social activism, or volunteering in your community. Become an agent of change.

Do Good to Feel Good

One of the simplest and purest ways to generate hope is to give it to others. Volunteer with nonprofits, commit random acts of kindness, change career paths if you have to. Just do something that gives back and creates positivity, hope, and happiness in the lives of others. You will see it come full circle.

Stay Away from Social Media and the News

There is a big difference between being socially responsible and informed and overindulging on news and media sources. Try to avoid the constant stream of updates, opinions, and commentary from social networking sites and news outlets. Feeding yourself with hourly doses of upsetting reminders only perpetuates pain and stress while preventing you from moving forward.

Find Your Inner Child

Another way of dealing with difficult emotions is getting back in touch with the resilient child within you. Children are incredibly talented at letting go of strife and finding happiness after trying circumstances. Go outside, play, run, exercise, take sensible risks, create something. Just do something that gets you out of your head and back into the world.

Wherever your disappointment comes from, whatever your situation is, it can change.

Remember that anything worth having is worth waiting for—and worth fighting for. Invest in yourself, your own future, and the hope for a better tomorrow. Don’t surrender to negative online opinions, news updates, fearful predictions, or hate. The way to progress is never giving up.

Schedule an appointment with Boulder Wellness Psychology today.

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