It had been a challenging month since I last posted. I want to blog more, but each time I sat down to set down something that might be true, or helpful, or thought provoking, I found myself backing away. My feelings were just too strong. My last post was about fear and I'll be honest, I am still fearful. Surprise, shock, sadness, anger, frustration, and confusion have also taken a turn. Emotions effect health and I recognized the need to pull back. I tried to balance staying informed by protecting myself from the tweets, posts, and general circus of the 24 hour news channels but in the end, I listened to my body and just turned it all off - no NPR, CNN, or NYT - occasional local news only - and yet, despite my best efforts I have learned some things that I wish I hadn't heard or seen. Although I'm not yet ready to let political news back into my life, it is time to sort things out and figure out a way forward. I need to stop googling "how to immigrate to Canada... Norway... Middle Earth..."
Don't get me wrong - I haven't been wallowing in despair. I've spent time with family and friends, read The Book of Joy by the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu, meditated and prayed, focused on how I could do good in my community, tried to bring lots of positivity into my life, and watched internet cat videos when all else failed. I've thought about Elizabeth Kubler-Ross' five stages of grief - denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance and realized that I am still firmly in the anger stage. I'm learning how anger seems to have played a big part in the outcome of the election, not just in my post election response. An Esquire/NBC News survey from November 2015 revealed that of the over 3000 Americans surveyed, about half were angrier than they were one year previously: women were even more likely to be angrier than men. I wondered if I was angrier too?
I've spent 2016 learning about the multiple spokes in our lives that influence health - not just our physical and mental health, but our environment, connection to community, fulfilling work, creative expression, relationship with money and more . I've come to realize that I've got a number of spokes that are out of alignment and the common denominator is the tension brought about by anger. I have an anger management problem and our country has an anger management problem. I don't know where this realization is going to take me, but I have decided to spend the coming year exploring anger - the effect it has in my life, the effect it has on my local community and our country, and to finding a path to better health by healing the anger.
I hope that you will join me and help me on this journey. Please 'Like' the Hub and Spoke Wellness page on Facebook and join the discussion there.