This is a guest post by Prudence Sinclair.
So many of the conversations I am having lately are with people who are feeling hopeless about things going on in the world. They are scared about their own finances, many having to choose between buying food and putting gas in the car. They are fearful of the promise of recession, if not a downright depression; fearful of food shortages, another pandemic or World War 3.
I always tell them the same thing: stop watching the news! Yes. It is important to stay informed so you can prepare yourself for things that may be on the horizon. But some people are doom addicts. They glue themselves to the TV or social media almost 24/7, watching fearful content as the hours tick on.
While we all must understand current events as best we can, being scared out of your mind and depressed isn’t really going to help matters. So limit your news and social media time.
But what else can we all be doing to hold onto a bit of hope while the world around us seems to crumble?
Finding Hope While Waiting to Die
I learned all about darkness and hopelessness 30 years ago when I was diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma and given only 6 months to live. I was in my early 20s and had barely begun to live when I was told I was going to die. To say the very least, the situation looked very bleak and utterly hopeless.
But there was a small voice inside of me that said this wasn’t my time. I was going to live. I could beat this cancer and then show others how to do the same. It was then I started on my journey to find natural cures and healing protocols I could do to help save my life. Participating in your own health is vitally important.
During that time, my mood was so up and down. One day I was certain I was doing better and I was going to make it, and the next, I was planning my own funeral. I knew in order to truly heal, I had to get myself into a positive state and KEEP myself there. And this was going to require me to have massive amounts of HOPE!
I learned a few ways to grab onto even the tiniest sliver of light and hope during those dark days, and I want to share those with you now, so you can do the same during these challenging times.
Miserable People are Miserable
All those years ago, I would have interactions with different members of my cancer care team. While some were kind and deeply committed to helping me heal, some were downright cold. When you’re in a dark place, fighting for your life, and a nurse or doctor is cold and indifferent toward your plight… it tends to send you to an even darker place.
But I realized that the people who acted the most repulsively were most likely in their own kind of pain. In fact, I learned that those people on this planet that act in the most “sinister” of ways, need the most compassion. Only someone deeply wounded and dark themselves could possible act inhumanely.
These days, the world seems to be run by downright evil tyrants. And while I do not condone the behavior of these people, I try to remind myself that much of the horrors we deal with on a daily basis come from the fact someone else is hurting even more than we are. We ALL need healing for the world to change, and it starts with just one of us.
Respond with Love and Kindness
Just as healing begins with the individual (be the change you want to see in the world) so does love. Let’s be honest, many people seem to be exhausted and stressed and angry these days. We all have the weight of the world on our shoulders, and some people may be more impatient and irritable than usual.
Do your best to respond with love and kindness in these moments, as that is the greatest antidote. Just as you can’t fight fire with fire, you also can’t fight unkindness with more unkindness. You would be surprised how someone’s attitude can do a 180 when you meet their darkness with light. It is a wonderful experience.
If we all share our light with others, the darkness MUST recede!
We often feel hopeless because we don’t feel there is anything we can do to change a situation. Most of us recognize there is nothing we can do to change the economy or the growing threat of war or another looming pandemic and lockdowns. But there are absolutely things we can do in our local communities.
We can make sure our neighbors have enough to eat. We can show up to local meetings and be part of change in that way. We can volunteer and bring hope to others. When we focus more on how we can create change at home, we feel safer and more hopeful with the craziness happening in the rest of the world.
Accept God’s Gifts – Big and Small
Sometimes the tiniest things can bring us joy and hope. A beautiful sunset. A great cup of coffee. Pretty tree shadows stretched across our neighbor’s lawn. The sound of windchimes wafting in through the kitchen window.
Be sure to find beauty and joy in the small things each and every day.
I know things are tough right now for many of us. I know that walking through the dark is frightening. But I also know firsthand that when we get to the other side, life can be even better!
To find hope in the coming days, be sure to look out for yourself and your neighbor, recognize others are in pain and try and meet unkindness with kindness.