I Got a Feeling
If you’re anything like anyone these past weeks, months, YEARS (2020-21 was a whole decade, amiright?!?), stress was the special of every stage of every course, of every meal. It still is. And let me tell you, as someone who is gastronomically limited, this adds a whole other level of mental & physical anguish, and I’m not being dramatic. Well, at least not overly. Whether it’s deliciously backwards, stressed undoubtedly propels us forward…
From the political landscape to outrageous media outpourings, the ongoing pandemic, financial struggles, mental health crises, environmental disasters, and a severe lack of respect for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) across the board…talk about the perfect storm for an overall emotional ulcer.
What’s to be Done?
Turn everything off and tune it all out – but then we’re disconnected. Let’s address the symptoms, throw a Band-Aid on the arterial bleed – and then it all just festers. Do the opposite, devour everything in our paths both literally and figuratively – and then we get overloaded & overwhelmed and shut down. So…what do we do?
We roll up our sleeves. Put on our gear – mask up, gloves on. We get to work. Filter your newsfeed, set time limits. Listen to both sides of a discussion – and hear, really hear what’s being said. Take notes. Digest it. Discuss it – calmly.
Balance the checkbooks, start a budget, organize a Go-Fund-Me, donate when/where/if you can. Have a job? Great, work it the best you can. Hate it? Yeah, I’ve been there – the solutions are there, but that’s a whole other blog post. In need of work? Text/call a friend – this is the time to lean on one another, and if you’re the friend being leaned on, do all that you can to help.
Get organized! Clean out those closets, wash the windows (yep, on my to-do list), and then dust off the recesses of your minds. A good spring cleaning isn’t just a literal chore, it’s something we have to do for our well-being. We’ve all gotta take a look in the mirror, do a deep mental dive, and check-in with ourselves so we don’t check out. And then we need to reach out – to one another.
See or hear something discriminatory? Call it out, LOUDLY. This is not being sensitive, PC, or a snowflake. This is being a morally responsible human being and standing up & speaking out against hatred & ignorance in any and all forms. I am writing this from a place of unearned privilege, I know that. I also know that I will do any & everything to ensure I continue to grow, learn & evolve. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I will show up, stand up & speak up. Unless it’s the time and place for me to sit down & shut up, and then I’ll do that too. Because ladies & gents this is when we leave our egos at the door.
Reduce, reuse, recycle, repurpose, repeat. Seriously, do this. Vegan/vegetarian lifestyle – give it a try. Compost! Go plastic-free as much as you can. Trade out paper products for bamboo, honestly it’s a 1:1 comparison. DIY – it’s not impossible, and gosh darn it, it’s actually fun! Travel wisely. And yes, hug a tree on occasion. Sustainability is incredibly doable, but it is a process that requires your investment, mostly time, but some dollars too.
Still Feeling It
It’s so easy to get hung up on the day-to-day, the monotony, the grind, the sheer weight of it all. Trust me, I get it, and I succumb to it too. Frankly sometimes making stressed go backward is one of my favorite pastimes – hello gluten-free Oreos! – but I’m truly not saying that you shouldn’t feel this way, and I am definitely NOT saying “suck it up, sweetheart.” That is one phrase I legitimately despise as it’s incredibly degrading & misogynist but I digress…
What I AM saying is that you feel your feels, have a mini wallow if needs be, but please don’t dwell. Take that incredible gift of free will & use it. Choose to get up. Choose to speak out. Choose to make a difference. Stress will always be there, both good and bad, so it’s up to us to decide how we respond, not react to it.
What’ll it be for you?