There has been a running theme for 2021 which brings hope for our future based on the premise, "We are all in this together."
This week we celebrated Martin Luther King Jr's birthday. One of the blessings he left us from his life were the many speeches and quotes that we still can draw wisdom from and apply to our lives today. One quote that speaks to me is about how we are to keep moving forward any way we can;
"If you can't fly then run.
If you can't run then walk.
If you can't walk then crawl.
But whatever you do,
you have to keep moving forward.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
We all have an opportunity to come together and heal from our past. If you find you are irritable and angry, maybe you are listening to too much of the negative commentary that has become normal for today. If you are spending too much time on the internet and leave it with information overload, then step away before you reach that point. If you find you are spending more time watching TV than you are engaged with your children and your partner, know that they feel your absence and want you back.
Human nature was created with our need to belong. We will seek the counsel of others as a way to connect. As therapists we see this all the time when our clients have difficulty wanting to terminate therapy. We may be the only people in their lives who they can regularly connect with. Many people process their thoughts by talking through them with someone else who will not judge or criticize them for sharing their concerns. Unfortunately, not everyone is a therapist and not everyone has the skills necessary to be empathetic. Often when we reach out to connect with someone devoid of empathy their unsympathetic responses can leave you feeling worse off and even more disconnected. This is when you must set boundaries for yourself that keep you from expecting something from the other who cannot give what you are needing. Not everyone cares about what you care about. Not everyone is listening to what you are listening to. Not everyone is consumed with the negative as they are seeking for themselves a pathway around the challenges. Sometimes, living free from the concepts that plague most of America means totally disconnecting from it all together.
People are shutting off their social media, TV, and Internet and instead or getting out of their homes away from the static of looping negative commentary.
Couples are taking date WEEKS instead of single nights. They are grabbing burgers and the kids and are creating a backyard oasis where board games and laughter exist.
The family going for a drive in the car has resurged as parents will go anywhere to find something to look at that does not have 4 walls.
Breathe deep. What can you do today to change up the routines that have become ruts? We don't need technology to live. You'd be surprised how many centuries we survived without a cell phone. Take a break that lasts all day. Step out and look up. Even being alone can feel amazingly connected with another as you remember your faith and who will "never leave you or forsake you."
"Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them,
for the LORD your God goes with you;
he will never leave you nor forsake you."