Polarity: Balancing pain and emotional well-being

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Smoke from wildfires fills the skies. Hurricanes ravage our shores. There’s a seemingly constant stream of needless police murders and betrayals from our political leaders. 

The pain and anger feel overwhelming to me this week. It just feels like too much. 

I notice my mind relentlessly trying to avoid it, hide from it, turn it off. It’s trying to protect me, to stay sane amid all the chaos. And yet, another part of me yearns to be present to that pain, to reckon with it, to let it guide how I show up in the world.

This is a key polarity for all us: We must find a way to balance: 1) being with the great pain inherent to our world and 2) protecting our emotional well-being. Both are vital. And we cannot do one without the other.

Where are you in that balancing act this week?

Peter Schulte

Peter Schulte is the founder and editor of Kindling. Peter is also Senior Digital Engagement Associate for the Pacific Institute and the UN Global Compact's CEO Water Mandate, connecting businesses to sustainable water practices. Peter holds a B.S. in Conservation and Resource Studies and a B.A. in Comparative Literature from University of California, Berkeley, and an M.B.A. in Sustainable Systems from Pinchot University. He lives in Bellingham, WA, USA with his wife, son, and cat.

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