If you’ve taken a look at the news at all this year, it’s probably seemed like the world is falling to pieces. While there is -and always has been- a lot of screwed-up crap going on in the world, we’re not quite at the apocalypse yet. Despite what the media might have you thinking, things in our immediate worlds are fine.
What does he mean by that? I hear you asking.
Well, even in this digital age where virtually everything feels like it’s right at our fingertips, the world is an enormous place. Even though we’re hearing about Syria, most of us probably won’t ever get to see it with our own eyes. It’s true that what’s happening abroad is atrocious, and short of donating to charities that aid the victims of the fighting, there’s not much we can do about it. It doesn’t matter how much we worry, fret or get upset about what’s going on in Syria, it’s still going to happen.
I’m not saying we should be ignoring what’s going on -far from it in fact-, but there’s a lot of stuff going on that makes humanity seem dreadful. Questionable world leaders, corruption, greed, animal extinction, global warming, discrimination… the list goes on. If we personally addressed each of those problems every day, we’d lose our minds. Altogether, these things drag us down, making us wonder how the human race is messing things up so rapidly, whilst being aware of it and watching it happen.
It created a powerless feeling, because no matter how much you disagree with the way the world is being run, it’s physically impossible to remedy each and every problem the world has. Sure, you could devote your entire life to fighting extinction, or rescuing orphans or any number of good works. People that do that have my utmost respect. But, in the grand scheme of things, there are plenty of current affairs that will probably always exist, no matter how much we despise them.
Throw in the problems most of us face on a day-to-day basis, and life begins to look pretty hopeless. Yes, the world is a messy place, but it’s also beautiful in other ways. The media is in part to blame- shocking news sells better than happy news: always has and probably always will. It’s shoved in our faces constantly, and it wears us down gradually.
What we need to do a little more of is self-care: taking care of our own affairs before worrying about current affairs. Channel your energy into something that you’re in control of, like your health, your home or your relationships. Fretting over things you can directly affect is a nice change of pace, because you can actually do something about it, and when rectified, will make the world seem like a slightly happier place. Small victories are just as important, and not letting the insanity of current affairs get you down will end up making a huge difference to the way you feel.
Again, I’m not telling you to stop caring about what’s going on around you, but instead to reel yourself in. It’ll always be awful hearing or reading about terrible happenings, but that doesn’t mean you have to absorb it all. Focus on your positives.