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Coping with Tragedy

Updated: Apr 16, 2023

As the US suffers through the national tragedy of yet another school shooting in Uvalde, we are all looking for ways to support each other and not give in to despair and powerlessness. What one person can do in the face of such a horrible situation may be limited, but it can have a tremedous effect in our lives and, by extension, the world around us. No matter what has happened in the past, we all need effective ways to care for ourselves and move forward in order to better care for each other. It is first important to acknowledge that anything we may be feeling right now is true and not useful to deny or suppress. We have to process our pain in order to engage with the issues in real time, and not become continuously weighed down by such negative experiences. This is not something we are taught to do in most cases, neither by our parents nor other educators. But we all have that internal hardware, however dormant it may be, within us. One of the jobs of a Naturopath is to assist people in reconnecting to this innate ability, to remind them how the dance goes, metaphorically speaking...we are all able and deserving of calm and quietude, despite our external circumstances.

A child's hand resting in a grown up's hand, on a blurry background.
Hand in hand.

Photo by Juan Pablo Serrano Arenas

It is so crucial to remember that we are not alone in situations like these. There are people and organizations out there that are ready and willing to support those who are struggling right now. At the same time, there is a lot we can do for ourselves to fill our cup. It begins with treating ourselves with care and consideration, allowing ourselves the space to process things as they come up. We are the experts when it comes to ourselves in a lot of ways, and often know better than anyone what we need in the moment intuitively. Whether it's putting aside the time to take a bath, spending time in nature, meditating, eating good foods or other restorative actions, we need to take care of ourselves before we can take care of other. If support and self-care is not working the way you want, don't give up! It just means you haven't found the right answer for your particular situation yet. Once you do, you will not be struggling with your personal problems as much, and will have more energy to put towards problems in the outside world. These situations are challenging and tragic and far too common in our country. They call on our intelligence and compassion, our strength and flexibility as a people to really connect with the issues and systematically address them. It is all too much for one person to resolve but thankfully, we don't have to go it alone. If everyone's personal problems become that much lighter, then everyone has that much more energy to devote to improving things for their family/community/life on this planet. None of us has to do everything but most of us have to do something in order to have a material effect on the world. Once humanity is able to actually unleash all that amazing potential though, we could have heaven on earth.

"You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty." – Mohandas Gandhi

If you are looking for support with mental or physical health issues, we invite you to book a free consultation with one of our licensed Naturopathic Doctors. Just call us at (415)-488-5831 or visit for more information.

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