We’ve all heard (and read) the recent news about Paris – the terrorists, shootings and bombings. It’s terrible. Really shocking. My heart really goes out to all that have been affected by it.
Since finding out about it, have you found yourself feeling more worried and fearful about your safety? Do you find yourself worrying about your loved ones, and what might happen to them?
I’m sure this has been the effect on many people.
So what do we do about what’s in the news?
Beyond shutting yourself up in your house to avoid it happening to you, is there really that much you can do to avoid it happening to you? Or to ease your fears? There isn’t, is there?
– You can do the sensible thing and follow precautions laid out by airport security when you’re flying to another country.
– You can be aware of any precautions government officials give you when you go out.
– You could also make yourself aware of likely target spots for future attacks – but can you really? There are predictions, but how many of them turn out to be accurate? And how many attacks occur in places that were not predicted?
I don’t want to worry you further – I am going somewhere with this thought process!
What I’m trying to say is that when you find yourself fearful and worrying a lot about it that the answer does NOT lie in trying to figure out how you can keep yourself (and your loved ones) out of danger, especially if the only way to do that means living a life that is severely limited.
Here’s how you can REALLY stop worrying about it :
Firstly, I want to challenge you on HOW you keep yourself informed of news like this.
So you’ve read (or watched) the key facts about what happened, no doubt. But many of you have probably not just done that, but as the news about it has continued to pour through our newsfeeds, many of you have read about it in detail – maybe four, five or ten articles about the same incident or set of incidents.
And then, some of you have gone further and discussed it in detail with friends or family and in doing that, you’ve found out even more detail about it.
Yes, by all means be informed if you need to be.
But let’s talk for a moment about the availability of detailed knowledge about tragic events.
Have you noticed how when you go online, read an article about a tragic, awful event such as this, once you’ve read it, you’re invited via links to related articles, to read more and more detail about the very same event.
- This time an eye witness account.
- And then a representative of the bomb squad and their account.
- Next from the account of someone who lost a loved one.
- Or someone who was injured but not killed.
- And an account from a journalist who found a new angle on one of the terrorists, their personal life story, what motivated them, and how they did it, and what similar acts they did in the past.
And on and on….and on.
Do you really want to know it all?
Do you know why online websites feed you many different angles on the same story? Because then you’ll read more and you’ll respond to adverts on that website.
Do you know what it’s doing to you and to your peace of mind? Nothing good, I can tell you that.
Ask yourself :
- Now that I know this information, how does it help my loved ones?
- How does it help ME?
- How does knowing this information help me better impact the world in some way?
Youll probably find that the answer to those questions is: NOT AT ALL.
But what about needing to know what to do to help prevent it happening to me?
How exactly are you going to stop it happening to you apart from taking the usual precautions you would take not to go into very dangerous places.
No matter WHAT you do, there’s got to be a certain element of trust in the security of the place you’re in, the aeroplane you’re flying in, and in the fact that you will not be in the wrong place at the wrong time. The only thing you can really, truly work on to alleviate your fears is your MIND.
So, now that we’ve dealt with the fact that there really is NOTHING different you can do to ensure the safety of yourself and your loved ones, let’s deal with your need still to be informed about what is going on.
Now ask yourself what effect is that having on you? On your sense of security? On your happiness? Your peace of mind? My guess is, it’s having a very negative effect on all of those things.
How your mind is being poisoned :
The only natural result of reading a lot of detail of tragedy after tragedy is these feelings :
That it’ll happen to you or to someone you love
About it happening; thoughts of how you’ll have to be more careful everywhere you go and endless worry as you start to realise that there’s not a lot you can do to avoid it
About the world we live in. What kind of world are my children growing up in? How much worse will it get? How will I cope?
Against the perpetrators
Now you’re in quite a state and if you read it first thing in the morning, you’re filled with thoughts of this and you haven’t even yet started your day.
Now, with all this churning in your brain, try and do a productive day’s work, instil positivity and the power of possibility into your children and their dreams or create a great home that your husband and children can come back to. Pretty hard, isn’t it?
Now I know that many people will disagree with my point of view and will continue to read every sordid detail of these events. I can’t do anything about that. But I can do what’s right for me and for my family and for everyone who chooses to be influenced by what I believe. What I’m saying is not conventional wisdom. Have you ever wondered about the fact that conventional wisdom is not very wise??
I don’t worry about my safety at all. Nor do I worry about the safety of my family. Even as recently as this week as this news has broken. I’ve lived this way for years. Why? Not because I have super-human powers to be positive. I don’t. Simply because I don’t FEED incessantly on things that bring worry and fear. And I don’t DWELL on it.
Truly, in this case, IGNORANCE IS BLISS.
I’m not an ignorant person : I have knowledge about many different subjects that are important for my life and my work.
I know where the attacks occurred and the locations. I know how many people died. But I’m happy to be ignorant of much more than that – the name of a shooter, or suicide bomber. I’m happy to be ignorant about their life story. And I’m happy to be ignorant about things I can’t control, and things that I can’t influence.
I can’t catch these terrorists even if I saw their photos, I’m very unlikely to recognise them walking down the street.
So, be knowledgable about things that matter to you, things that help you make a good impact on the world, things that improve your ability to be a great parent, sister, brother, employee, business owner or friend.
And let’s talk about what you CAN do to alleviate some of your anxiety and fear over it :
- Stop reading about it!
Once you’ve got the basics, do you honestly, really, need to know more? If you realise how much it’s negatively affecting you & your state of mind, you’ll do the RESPONSIBLE thing, which is to ignore any further detail and reports about it.
- Find some stories of hope and goodness that you can dwell on.
You see, for every act of terror that is committed in the world, its very, very likely that one (or more) kind, generous and helpful acts are being committed in the world, RIGHT NOW. But you are focussing on the negative ones. Why? Because that’s what you hear about in the news. So do yourself a favour and search out the good. Look for (and dwell on) news, music, video clips and information that brings you peace, joy, hope and courage.
- Help in some way, if that is what you feel in your heart you need to be doing.
Perhaps you can write a note to someone who lost a loved one, make a donation to a charity that supports them, or pray if you’re a spiritual person. But READING is not helping, DOING is.
And be at peace.
Have a great, peaceful weekend.