What is the world coming to??
Maybe your parents used this expression to complain about punk rock or kids preoccupied with their phones.
But for you, it has a different meaning. Literally:
What is going to happen to this planet and all the people on it?
Day after day, your newsfeed is filled with images of fires burning whole towns… hurricanes, and floods destroying peoples’ homes… glaciers calving and melting before our eyes… people dying in heatwaves…
It’s hard to handle even one more story of climate catastrophe.
It’s so overwhelming, and a million questions keep you up at night…
Should we move?
Should I quit my job and become an environmental advocate?
Should I learn how to be a survivalist?
Should I have kids? (or “Why did I have kids just to have them inherit such a messed up world??!!”)
What will the world look like in ten years?
Will I survive this?
Why isn’t everyone paying attention?
Why won’t world leaders do more?
How could my parents’ generation and their parents’ generation willfully ignore how they harmed the planet?
Will my children ever get to see Yosemite the way I saw it?
Will any of us get to see polar bears in their natural environment in the future?
Will I start losing people close to me from environmental disasters?
Will I be able to live my life to its full extent?
How can I possibly stop this crazy process?
How can I stop driving myself crazy with thinking about it?
Why isn’t everyone else’s hair on fire? What’s wrong with ME?
You’re only one person. What can you even do?
It’s too big a problem for a few to solve, and some people seem intent on closing their eyes and pretending it’s not happening.
You’ve tried donating to organizations and joining causes, but it never seems like enough.
You’ve looked into electric cars, solar panels, and not eating meat… but there’s only so much you can afford.
You want to make sacrifices, but it can be hard when everyone around you keeps consuming.
You want to educate yourself… not put your head in the sand. But sometimes, learning more only makes the problem seem bigger and even more hopeless.
You start to understand why some people ignore it. Maybe that’s their way of not going crazy.
But you can’t get it out of your mind… no matter how hard you try.
There are no easy answers, but you can find more peace.
Climate change IS happening, and this much we know:
Ignoring it or sinking into despair won’t help.
We need people who care for and love this planet more than ever, but how do you keep fighting the good fight when the emotions are crippling?
There is no one clear solution, but here are some things that will help:
You are not alone. We can explore ways you can connect with others in meaningful ways.
When you have a community to work with, your singular efforts are multiplied into something more effective. And it is known in research that taking action helps reduce anxiety.
The anxiety will not go away (it’s there to alert us to a genuine danger). But with good self-care, the anxiety can propel you, not paralyze you.
Putting any energy into wishing this wasn’t happening won’t help. Putting energy into adapting will. But we cannot adapt if we don’t accept the challenges in front of us.
Climate grief is a real thing. We are grieving species and lands that we are losing. We are grieving the loss of the way we thought life would be on this planet. Coping with the grief in healthy ways helps move us forward.
Living in harmony with the Earth’s rules…
There is a way to live on this planet that benefits our environment rather than hurting it. Native people understood the rules of our planet…
…never take more than you need,
…use everything you take,
…live with reciprocity always in mind,
…give true thanks for what you consume, to name a few.
We have gotten so used to our consumerist ways that change may sound painful. Together, we can discover the joy that can come with following the Earth’s basic rules.
“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to
change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference…”
− Reinhold Niebuhr
Let me help you find your balance…
Coming to therapy won’t stop climate change, and it won’t solve all the world’s problems. But it can help you cope and stretch yourself in surprising and fulfilling ways.
Work with me in nature (I love doing outdoor therapy) or in my office. We will transform your fear into that just-right balance of change and acceptance.
Ready to ditch the anxiety? Call me to find out how I can help: