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How I learned to stop worrying and embrace the chaos

Four plus months into this almost indescribable event, I humbly offer ten tips for getting through the day in a nation lurching from crisis to crisis.

  1. REFRAMING: Instead of thinking, “I did not sign up for this mess,” I started asking, “What’s my new role in the era of unprecedented change?”
  2. DECLUTTERING: I minimized any contact with the so-called “news,” asking friends to inform me of anything time-sensitive — the earth-shattering “updates” that I truly had to know to function in my city. (Updates of significance are few and far between.)
  3. READING: I increased my reading of books on how societies successfully address public health crises, economic disruptions and manmade challenges. (Now starting Bruce Mau’s 24 principles for designing Massive Change in your life and work.)
  4. SEEING: I look outside my window, armed with data on how my neighbors within a 50 mile radius are suffering, and focus my energies on addressing the local problems hurting children, families and all the most vulnerable residents.
  5. ADJUSTING: I meditate daily and reflect on my capacity to be a change agent in this strange turn of global events. I make adjustments as needed, to my lifestyle and living arrangement, so that I am better equipped to empower others.
  6. ACTING: I clearly see that this stark moment in US history is our opportunity to join together and take measurable and meaningful action to address a very, very long list of social wrongs, disparities and injustices.
  7. CONNECTING: I invest in synergy, keeping in constant communication and forming collaborations with like-minded folks who are rising to the challenges before us.
  8. MOVING: I take a long stroll each day. In the quiet moments, the sunrise and sunset continue to inspire.
  9. TREATING: I order banana pudding from a bakery in NYC, delivered quarterly as part of my self-care process.
  10. ACKNOWLEDGING: I accept with grace the fact that earth has plans for us, working in ways one can never fully understand. Mortality reminds me that we were always guests on a brief stay.

*The future is what we make it. Join the evolution.

Please excuse any typos as I construct an article at 3am on only one cup of Joe. These stories are mine and mine alone. I do not represent any organization here. If one of my illustrations looks like a real human or three-headed hydra, that’s total coincidence. Words and images ©Dominic Cappello but share with everyone you know. Questions? The Plan Forward awaits you here: www.tenvitalservices.org

Written by

A NY Times bestselling author, social justice activist, Oprah guest, co-author of Attack of the Three-Headed Hydras, 100% Community and Anna, Age Eight.

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