Following nonstop news in an era of gun violence, war and political divide can become overwhelming. And amid our many ongoing challenges — the pandemic, climate change, economic uncertainty — it’s understandable to feel sad, angry and anxious.
As a clinical psychologist who specializes in giving people the tools to cope with intense emotions, I know how difficult it can be to remain positive — or simply balanced — while caring deeply about our world. Some of my clients say they can’t stop doomscrolling, others engage in unhealthy behaviors to tune it out and many bounce between the two extremes.
But it is possible to anchor yourself if it feels as though you’re slipping into despair about the state of the world. I rely on these seven mindfulness-based strategies for myself and my clients to stay grounded.
1. Label your feelings.
If you can precisely label the emotion you’re experiencing in the moment, you can reduce its power in your body and brain. Name whatever emotion you are feeling, whether it is sadness, fear, anger, disgust