For the past two years, our country has been in the middle of the worse recession since the Great Depression. Little does it matter that the economists have declared the recession over. Many people are still struggling to find a job or are fearful that their job might disappear in the future. People are upset and angry at their senators and representatives in Washington, DC. We have become a very anxious people. Fear appears to reign supreme.
Now we begin another election cycle and both parties will attempt to use this fear to sway the voters. We will be bombarded by negative ads until November. Candidates will claim all kinds of outrageous things about each other and we will be left not knowing what is the truth. We are easily manipulated by fear if we place our security in external factors such as government, relationships, wealth or power. If instead we base our sense of security on our abilities to adapt to changing situations and focus on what we can do to make a difference, we will find our anxiety diminishing somewhat. Yes, there are things out of our control. However, spending useless hours ruminating about them does not change anything but our ability to respond in the best way possible.
We become exhausted from the worry rather than from any effort to influence what it is that we can change. It is important to pay attention to anxiety when it rises within and to listen to what we are telling ourselves. If our thoughts have snowballed out of control with a bunch of catastrophic predictions or “what ifs” then it is time to confront these cognitions with a more rational assessment of reality.
We need to watch the attitude with which we approach life and look for moments of joy and gratitude even in the midst of turmoil. While this will not make the economy improve over night, it will allow us to adapt in the best way possible to any situation in which we find ourselves. It is not the “end of the world” or even the end of prosperity in this nation. We will find a way to achieve a balance again as a nation even if it means we will need to be more thrifty and resourceful. This country has been founded on solid principles which can lead us back to a better future. Let’s use this as an opportunity to join together as a nation and work for the