An Open Letter to Fellow Couragemakers Who Have Lost All Hope In The World
Dear fellow Couragemakers,
It's pretty hard not to think that we're all fucked.
As the empathisers, the carers, the world shakers, we know how it works. We know how much of the world is held up by misogyny, racism, class war, ablism and homophobia. While we strive to make the world a brighter place, we're reminded every day just how much injustice and oppression we're fighting.
But behind our rage, our disappointment and perhaps our indifference, lies a bigger danger. A loss of hope.
The same loss of hope that can lead to despair, depression, and total burnout. We can start to feel like we've become disillusioned and we've lost our purpose.
And that's completely normal. Especially with such a build up, so much uncertainty, and with the news and political parties installing fear into every essence of our being
But seriously, it doesn't have to be that way.
Being burnt out isn't a trophy of your hard work. It doesn't justify your work as an activist, and it certainly isn't a measure of how much you care.
It's a call that you need to start looking after yourself, and regain your strength.
Turn off the news. Go off grid. Do something completely unrelated. Find whatever it is that takes you outside of the activist realm and gives you peace, and go do it.
That doesn't mean that you won't start again tomorrow, next week or next year. You're not giving up on the the world. It doesn't mean you don't care about the world.
It simply means you acknowledge that before you can help others, you need to help yourself first. You need to replenish yourself, regain your strength, and find a way to keep grounded in what's important to you, as well as the cause.
And the great thing about that?
You start to see your own wellbeing on the same level as the cause. And as a result of that, you start playing a more important role in the cause. You start to bring a new perspective, and action that only you can bring.
And it starts to become sustainable. You can impact change in a measured way, that doesn't drain you or demoralise you.
You can bring more joy into your life, amongst the trauma and the pain.
You can start to feel good, amongst the shit and quit feeling bad about that.
You can change the people around you, who will change the people around them, and then slowly, you begin to change the world.
One person, one mindset at a time.
Change doesn't always have to come in the form of a political upheaval, especially if that system isn't rigged to work anyway.
Change can come from deciding to share more positivity with those closest from you. From deciding to make sure you use community facilities, and encouraging your friends to do the same.
Change can come from picking up shopping for your next door neighbour when you go out. From making an effort to welcome new people into your community.
Change can happen from a smile.
We spend so much time focusing on the end goal that we become depleted and detached.
What if the end goal was to impact the world by becoming the best person you can be, to be a positive influence to those closest to you , in the faith that it'll rub off on them and the cycle will continue?
So wherever you are, whatever you're fighting for, take the time now to take care of yourself.
Because that's truly the best thing you can do for the world in the long run.
A fellow fighter