I am a worrier. If I am not mindful of my internal state, I am easily consumed by anxiety.
I worry about the food I eat. Is it healthy? Is it produced in a sustainable manner? Does it taste good?
I worry about the clothes I wear. Is it comfortable? Does it cost too much? Was this t-shirt produced with slave labor?
I worry about the situation in North Dakota. I know people on both sides of the argument and I see validity in both sides, where is the civil dialogue? Why must we resort to violence? Will this support or damage the Native peoples platform? Is oil essential to our economy?
I worry about cancer. Am I doing enough to reduce my risk? Could I have done more to help my mother? Are pesticides truly safe?
These are just a few of the things that trigger my anxiety. I’ve struggled with anxiety my entire life. I worry so much, I worry about what my worry says about me. Until now, it wasn’t something I shared with many people. Only those closest to me know just how much I worry. My worry is a side effect of sensitivity. Over the years, I’ve developed tools to handle my anxiety, it seldom spirals out of control or drives my decision making. When it does, I am able to step away from the stress, examine it objectively, and strip it down to the root cause. Being an empath in today’s world is difficult.
Lately, my stress revolves around today’s election. I don’t care for either presidential candidate. They set my teeth on edge and my ethical center (my gut) flips with distaste at the thought of either of them in office. I will go to the polls and I will vote anyway, because doing so will, at the very least give me the illusion of control. Whatever the outcome, I will settle into the choice and the changing environment of our country the best I can.
I will invest in things I know I can influence in a powerful way and I will breathe into and release the idea that I have control.
I will invest my consumer dollars in businesses that reflect my values. I will exercise kindness everyday, regardless of the election outcome we are all still Americans. We can all choose to engage in one simple, random act of human kindness. I strive to create space for listening with respect, whether I agree with someone or not. My opinions are my own, grown out of my experiences and rooted in my conscience. Whether your feelings align with my own or we meet across a partisan lines and political divisions, I chose to give your opinion the same understanding.