Be Healthy Utah's most important responsibility is to empower others to take control of their health. The more knowledge you acquire, the more empowered you become in who you are and the direction you want to go.
Take the time to feel your emotions. Sadness, shock, grief, or whatever emotions may be arising are real emotions. Feel love for those who are suffering, including yourself. Amidst this, invite feelings of safety and comfort, and stay connected to the deep sense of being that is always present inside of you no matter what is happening in life. Connect yourself to the world by walking in nature, yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises
While it is important to feel these events fully, we lose our power when we let feelings of sadness, anger, or fear replace our ability to act. Wallowing in these negative emotions takes away our power. Remember that these feelings are messengers telling us that we want things to be different, that we want change. Acknowledge your feelings, listen to their message, and then let them empower you to make a difference.
Focus on issues that speak to your heart. No one can do it all, so it is best to focus on one or two things you can do well, and then commit fully to your cause. Trust that you will be the best at what inspires your heart the most. Then consider how you can best make a difference. The more you feel and see yourself making a difference, the more passionate you will be about continuing to create change.
Avoid becoming overwhelmed. Be careful not to carry the weight of the world on your shoulders. Focus on what you can affect, and trust that other people will take care of the issues that matter to them—we’re all in this together. Also, take time to look at the positive outcomes from challenging situations, such as the way adversity can bring people together to make a difference. Sometimes our “default” is to focus on the negative things. In reality, billions of positive things are happening at every moment.
Remember that we can do more together! Sometimes we are afraid to act alone, but when we harness the power of community, we are empowered by this connection and collaboration with others. Find people devoted to your cause, and build on the energy that comes from working collectively toward a greater good. Broadening your sense of community also helps with feelings of isolation and helplessness, as you witness others’ important contributions.
Practice self-compassion, patience, and positive self-reflection. We often see only what we “could have done” or “should have done better,” which is discouraging and minimizes the importance of our efforts. One of the most important parts of serving is to reflect on what you did and why it helped. This creates positive mental imprints and releases endorphins in the brain, increasing your chances of being proactive again in the future and improving your efficacy.
Be resilient and avoid discouragement. If it’s cultural change you’re working for, remember that it doesn’t happen overnight. There will be harsh reminders that progress is not always linear. Remember that adversity does not always denote a lack of progress. Progress takes time. Have faith that you are planting seeds that will ultimately blossom into positive change.
Prioritize your time. We might often think we don’t have enough time to help, or get what we want done, when in reality, we do. Recognize that saying “I don’t have time for that” is just a softer way of saying “that's not a priority right now.” Reflect on how you prioritize your time, and make appropriate changes. Create a new normal for your prioritization of time that includes what matters most.
Remember that you can’t pour from an empty cup. Make sure you are leaving time for true self-nourishment. Identify and reduce or eliminate any activities that may seem relaxing but are actually increasing your stress. It’s important to remain committed to the practices that keep you grounded and connected to your true, unchanging self, whether it’s a spiritual practice, meditation, a sport, a walk in nature, or something else that speaks to your heart.