This will be a fairly short and sweet Helping You Help Yourself because while it’s true that we need to help ourselves and each other more than ever, the ways forward for doing that aren’t long or complicated. We take care of ourselves, and take care of each other; we look for tasks that need doing and do them, one at a time, one day at a time. We listen to the people who have already been doing this work, who have lived through times like this before, and do what they tell us to. It’s not easy, necessarily, but it isn’t necessarily complicated, either. That, I think, is the big picture of how we help going forward; here are a few things for the slightly smaller picture of this week.
First, two things we’ve published you may have missed: an excellent post by Molly talking all about coping skills with a lot of really good concrete information. KaeLyn wrote a great post on ways to get involved and make a difference, because even though it’s hard the best way to stop the feeling of helplessness is to help.
In general, I want to say that while you’ve probably been inundated with talk about self-care — and regardless of your feelings or associations around that concept, it’s going to be harder than ever before to get out of bed, to remember meals, to vacuum. It’s hard right now and it’s likely to only get harder. Figure out what works best to motivate or trick yourself into successfully keeping up with the daily routine of being a person, of taking care of yourself, and fix that in your mind. Maybe it’s imagining how you would want a friend to be taken care of, and doing that for yourself; maybe it’s remembering your younger self and committing to not letting them down. For me, because maybe I have more spite in me than I’d like to admit, it’s thinking about how the people who have just been elected want the worst for me, and deciding to frustrate them. I’ve been having a hard time waking up or remembering to eat, but last night I thought about how much Mike Pence doesn’t want LGBT people to be healthy or happy and filled up my pill-a-day container with vitamins for the week, something I haven’t done in months. Figure out what you need to focus on to keep going, and remember it every day.
If the plethora of email scandals and revelations about the NSA even before this election didn’t spook you, the election should have. Here’s some information on stuff to know about web security, an action plan for web security for artists and activists, and securing your Google account.
Some ways to deal concretely with panic and anxiety.