Do you ever feel like you're living in the middle of an Apocalypse? Like the world is on fire and you're throwing a cup of water on the problems? David Attenborough and Greta Thunberg got you feeling like the whole world is fudged and there's not much at this stage that you can do about it...?
Everything in the world seems dire...what difference can one person make?
The thing is, you are making a difference. If you are aware of the problem and you are talking about the problem, well then you've already made more progress than most people in power.
Take veganism and plant based diets, for example. I think a lot of people are put off by extremists and the fear that they can never have a chicken burger again. Therefore it's either all or nothing. I for one, think this is a ridiculous notion. If we all went vegan once a week we'd be flying it and making a huge difference, meanwhile nobody would be putting a gun to your head and telling you you can't eat this or that. Nobody wants that added stress in their life. The main point is that you are trying and you are making a conscious effort. And I tip my hat to those people! To those that are trying, that are making conscious decisions to make a vegan curry, or to buy oat milk instead of regular milk, who bring their reusable coffee cups in their handbags or harvest lettuce from their little window plant instead of buying it wrapped in plastic from the shop. I applaud you wonderful people, because even though it doesn't seem like a lot, even though it seems pointless and a waste of time and energy-you are helping. You are making a difference. You are trying and you are aware, and that is half the battle.
So you've made your vegan curry-now what? McDonald burgers are still plentiful and Global Warming still rages on. And you feel like you've barely made a dent, right? The thing that you need to remember is that there is power in numbers. Maybe you make a vegan curry for your housemates one night, and they all make it for their families, and their fathers realise that vegan currys aren't actually the devils work and their mother decides to make it once a week! How many chickens have you saved..? As the Zero Waste Chef quotes "We don't need a handful of people doing [it] perfectly. We need millions of people doing it imperfectly." Take voting for example, everything thinks that their vote wont make a difference, and so they don't bother voting. But if every single person under the age of 30 thinks that way, then that's a whole lot of people not voting who may well have made up a huge difference in the final result.
There's a lot of negative news and depressing facts and figures out there, I get that. And if you are feeling overwhelmed and disheartened right now, well take a minute to pause and give yourself a pat on the back. You are contributing to change. You don't have to carry this guilt for the whole world on your shoulders alone. You are doing wonderfully! Half the battle is being aware and conscious of whats going on and talking about it. We see it in therapy, in meditation etc...if you are aware of a feeling or a thought then you can begin to heal it. The same applies to global issues. Awareness is key my friends.
If you are feeling like you are battling these issues alone, I assure you that you're not! There are countless amounts of people out there who feel the same as you. Reach out to them! Start a Facebook group, begin a project with a friend, encourage a co-worker to help make your office greener, begin a charity event with your mom...be proactive! But don't feel like you have to do it alone. I think the lock-down has taught us that as human beings the most important thing for us, for our mental, physical and spiritual well being, is our tribe: our friends, our families, our community. We are going through hell, but when there's an army behind you to catch you, it makes falling that little bit easier.
Surround yourself with people that love, respect and cherish you. Trust in them, trust in yourself, and trust in life. Things will work out. Every good deed that you do has a ripple effect, even if you can't see it. Have faith dear one! All is not as bleak as it seems.
To end here's a quote from one of my favourite books:
“My life amounts to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean. Yet what is any ocean, but a multitude of drops?” ― David Mitchell, Cloud Atlas