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How to Make Peace with the State of the World

By Julie Ann Cairns | Abundance

Nov 27

love-1640793_1920One of your fellow Abundance Coders wrote in requesting a blog post about “how to apply the principles of abundance when it comes to making a difference to global issues.”

It came from a lady in New Zealand, named Sofia.

Sofia wrote:

“Here’s something you could shed light on for me.

One thing I’m torn about is how to apply the principles of abundance when it comes to making a difference to global issues. Here’s what I mean: I’m passionate about the environment and living a sustainable life, and have been applying it to my own life, which makes me proud and optimistic about the future of our planet.

Like you, I’ve filtered my environment to eliminate as much negativity as possible, so mainstream media were the first thing vetoed in my world. Because I know if there’s something I really need to know about, I will find out about it in my networks anyway.

Where it gets tricky for me is when I see governments and organisations make decisions that violate the preservation of our environment and planet in such massive proportions. We seem to keep offending it so grossly that it makes me angry …

… I’m confused. How can I be a contribution, without coming from scarcity and feeding the fear that surrounds the topic, but honouring its urgency?

Thanks, Julie. I love your work – thank you for your contribution to my abundant life.

Have a fantastic day!
Sofia”

That is such an excellent question Sofia!

How can we balance creating abundance in our lives and contributing to an abundant world, while at the same time we see so many crises happening on our planet that require our urgent attention and positive solutions… and yet we don’t want to get sucked into a spiral of negativity that could sabotage the very abundance we seek?

It’s tricky for sure… you pegged that right Sofia!

For me, the key is to stay focused on SOLUTIONS.

Okay, so we do need to know the nature of the problem before we can find a solution. And we also often need to recognise or acknowledge the urgency to find a solution. But if we allow ourselves to get swallowed up in feelings of anger, futility, or hopelessness about the problem itself… then we aren’t going to be able to keep our eyes, minds and hearts open to possible solutions.

The main practice that helps with this is to start by ACCEPTING WHAT IS. It doesn’t mean we like it. It doesn’t mean that we will do nothing to change it (forgive the double negative here). It just means that we start with a reality check. We look at how things are, in this moment, and we accept that it is what it is. And then, we move forward.

Here are the positive steps that can lead us from ‘problem’ to ‘solution’ when we practice the acceptance of what is:

  • We acknowledge the ‘problem’
  • We feel motivated to solve it.
  • We define the ‘problem’ in terms of who, what, where, when, and why. For example who is this a problem for? What is the problem? Where is it a problem? When is it a problem? Why is it a problem (and why is the ‘problem’ is creating an outcome we do not want)?
  • We look at what we want instead. We define a new goal
  • We plan out how we might achieve our new goal… (this is the ‘solution’)
  • We define some actionable steps that we can take to implement the ‘solution’... and finally…
  • We take action!

So… none of this requires us to get lost in feeling angry, depressed or hopeless. In fact, if you follow these steps, you will soon feel empowered and hopeful once again.

Alternatively, here is a loop that many people get stuck in… and it leads NOWHERE…

  • We acknowledge the ‘problem’
  • We feel angry about it
  • We complain about it on social media, we forward posts about it, we rattle and rail against the injustice of it all…

So far what we’re doing is not SO bad. It’s not exactly helping though. But then we often take it up a notch…

  • We decide who’s to ‘blame’ for it… and this person, group of people, organisation or government becomes ‘them’.
  • We complain about ‘them’, we forward negative commentary about ‘them’ to our friends, we troll ‘them’ online, and we might even treat ‘them’ poorly if we meet them offline
  • We look for sympathisers with our view and we think of those people as ‘us’… and we begin to unfriend or unfollow those who don’t agree with ‘us’
  • We feed the ‘us’ and ‘them’ narrative… we demean ‘them’ with our thoughts, words and deeds… which causes division in our hearts and minds, and creates conflict between ‘us’ and ‘them’
  • We call all of this ‘raising awareness’ but really it’s more like a form of zealotry
  • And other than that… we do NOTHING to contribute to a solution.

It’s our anger that pushes us into this unproductive loop that consumes our energy. Energy we could be directing towards finding and implementing a solution.

So what’s the answer?

It’s unrealistic to say that we could just NOT get angry about the problem. Anger is a natural emotion, and emotions are neither right nor wrong. It’s important to feel them. It’s what we do next that’s is crucial.
Anger can be healthy, if it’s directed in the right way. The most helpful way to direct your anger is to use it as MOTIVATION to find a solution. This is the most peaceful, helpful, productive way to use your anger. The least helpful way to use your anger is to direct it into an unproductive loop of blame, complain,and demean.

Sofia…and everyone else reading this… I hope you found this post helpful!

 

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To YOUR Abundance

Julie Ann Cairns

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