Connect with your community.
Talk to people. People you don't know, people who you otherwise wouldn't have talked with, people who seem to be different from you. Put your phone away and ask them about what they love. Ask them about their families. Rather than hiding, go out. Go to vigils. Go to yoga. Go to church. And weave yourself more fully into the human tapestry.
Allow yourself to feel.
There is a time for planning action, and there is a time to leave space for your feelings. Many are riding a rollercoaster of grief, anger, sadness, fear, frustration -- so step away from social media, news feeds, and the television and do something that gives you space. Meditate, go for a walk, practice yoga, sit on your couch and drink tea, cook a nourishing soup. Something, anything, that allows you to make space for your full experience. And then...
Choose your cause. Educate yourself. Get Involved.
This election will likely mean a lot of pushes for policy changes on issues that are dear to our hearts. Choose one or two causes (not more -- that feels too overwhelming), really educate yourself fully, and find a way to participate regularly beyond donating. Whether it's volunteering with the Boys & Girls Club, fundraising for Planned Parenthood, or volunteering to do trail work on public lands, your presence matters. A lot. Check out Volunteer Match for help finding nonprofit opportunities in your area, and Jezebel posted A List of Pro-Women, Pro-Immigrant, Pro-Earth, Anti-Bigotry Organizations that need your help.
Make a plan to shift your relationship to fossil fuels.
Let's be honest here: our social reliance on fossil fuels is beneath a lot of issues we're currently facing. How is your relationship to them? Can you reduce your use of plastic, gasoline, oil? Can you carpool more, or cut your electricity consumption, or reuse rather than buy new? Choose three things that you can commit to, and write them somewhere you will see them regularly. And/or? Reduce your dependence on stuff in general. Check out my friends Josh & Ryan's journey to minimalism here.
Hold a safe space gathering.
There are a lot of people out there who don't know how best to process. We don't have many social structures in place to provide safe outlets for feelings, where people won't experience shaming in the name of "logic" or "you should have known". Create the container by explaining that this is a space for sharing, not arguing, criticizing, or negating anyone else's feelings. Encourage people to talk about how they feel, not make observations about the state of things. And be willing to step in to support the safety and sanctity of that container.
We are capable of creating immense beauty in the world. Like Morning Altars, a project devoted to daily creation of ephemeral magic in the form of earth mandalas, or your local artists' collective, or what you see through your camera lens, or that guitar that has been staring at you for months from the corner (ahem), or your local community band/chorus... the options are endless. We need more beauty, and you can create it.
Choose your vibe.
It's tempting to get swirled up into anger, or despair, or frustration. To spend hours "arguing" on Facebook or Twitter. But friends, choose your vibe carefully. Engage in conversations that feel supportive, let go of those that feel sticky and "unfollow" those conversations or people. Choose the places where you spend time. Choose the people that you spend time with. Choose nourishing foods rather than drowning in alcohol or sweets (though there's definitely space for some indulgence). Choose your music, too -- I made a playlist. For me, for you.
More ideas? Send 'em my way. I'll add them to the list.
In Unity, Togetherness, Love....