Wars are poor chisels for carving out peaceful tomorrows.Martin Luther King Jr.
For empaths, intuitives, and Highly Sensitive Persons (HSPs) the current barrage of information about the emerging situation in Ukraine, while we are dealing with an ongoing pandemic, and the usual global uncertainty, as well as our own local and personal issues, can be cripplingly overwhelming.
It’s hard to watch the news right now, and I’m sure you’ll feel the same anguish, disbelief and helplessness that I do.
Our filters aren’t as strong as most people’s. We feel everything so acutely. What do you do if you are an empath or an HSP who can’t bear to watch one more story while still feeling compelled to help, and unable to turn away from the plight of those who are being plunged into conflict, or who are facing suffering?
I have a few suggestions:
- Turn off the news feed and stop clicking on the images and stories. It’s not helpful to those experiencing conflict. It is not helpful to you. Instead, find ways to take action to alleviate distress rather than adding to it.
- Light a candle and say a prayer. Send positive energy, love and light to help bring an end to suffering in the world. Then go mindfully and peacefully about your day.
- Recognise that you alone are powerless to fix all of this. You are just one person. Still, you ARE one person, with a voice and hands and a heart, and perhaps even some money. Know that in your own way you can find a way to provide meaningful support.
- Donate money to aid organisations that are on the ground in conflict zones and refugee camps around the world. They know what is needed and can get your aid dollar there to provide food, shelter and medical care. Ukraine is just one of many places experiencing conflict and suffering. Whomever you decide to help, wherever in the world, your help is needed and appreciated.
- Find out about refugee support services in your local area. Perhaps they need donations of food, clothing, furniture or skills. There are also many groups set up to introduce newly arrived refugees to local residents to foster friendship and social engagement, and to help with language skills. This is kindness and inclusion in action, and doing practical things always helps us to better manage our own anxiety or distress.
- Tonglen meditation is a simple technique you can use to send love, energy and positive intention to lighten the burden and suffering of another. It costs nothing and you don’t need any special skills – anyone can do this easy energetic practice.
- Reach out to someone, and offer kindness, support and the generosity of being there for them in some small way. Maybe that is listening, paying a visit to a lonely elderly relative, dropping off a meal to an exhausted mum, or sending a supportive message or a text to let someone know that they are in your thoughts. You could also leave a bowl of water or food out for the critters in your area, plant a tree or pick up some litter. Every small act of goodness and heart-centred action ripples out into the wider world.
- If you can’t do something to help someone else, start with yourself. Take some quiet time, and focus on how you can better support yourself, look after your own needs, and honour your own gifts. This includes such simple things as doing housework, feeding yourself, and attending to your daily tasks. Create routines that bring stability, security and comfort.
I know, being alive hurts sometimes and the world can feel overwhelming.
I know that you feel your connection to others and the earth deeply – you know that we are all part of one big family. Caring and being this sensitive is not a weakness but a beautiful gift.
Don’t ever wish to be less sensitive, or to stop caring.
We need you to keep being you, and to hold a space of oneness for all of humanity.
Look after your sensitive nature by learning how to protect yourself from overwhelm, and to take actions that ease your feeling of helplessness.
Thinking of you, and standing in solidarity as we anchor love, and send love, light and peace out into the world, Nicole 🧡 xx