How to Process Inconceivable World Events While Living Daily Life

How to Process Inconceivable World Events While Living Daily Life

How to Process Inconceivable World Events While Living Daily Life

How to Process Inconceivable World Events While Living Daily Life

Whether turning on the news, opening Tik Tok, or starting a conversation with a peer, chances are you will be faced with reminders of the atrocities occurring in our world right now. In addition to individual challenges each of us may be experiencing, there is a collective trauma we are faced with as well, given the many tragic and inconceivable events taking place.

You want to stay informed, so maybe you open your social media; however, you may quickly close out of the app because the graphic posts fuel your anxiety. How can we process inconceivable events and still go about living our day to day lives in a healthy way? As a trauma and anxiety therapist, I am here to tell you while it is extremely difficult, it is possible. Here are some suggestions for how to cope during these difficult times:

Allow yourself to feel. Our natural inclination may be to push away or avoid difficult emotions. However, allowing yourself to feel whatever emotions arise is necessary. Validating even our most difficult emotions reinforces the notion that it is okay to feel anger, sadness and anxiety during these difficult times. It is wise to take moments during the day to really feel these emotions. If we try to push these emotions away, they will likely bubble up and may even grow stronger. You may choose to talk about these events with a friend, journal, watch a sad movie, or listen to emotional music. While creating space for these emotions can be difficult, it is also healthy.

Engage in distraction. Distraction has a bad rap; however, intentional distraction can be very helpful. We may feel as though we don’t deserve to feel happy when there is so much suffering in our world. Yet just as difficult emotions are fleeting, neutral and positive emotions come and go as well.

It is okay to carve out time to go for a walk and take in the smell of fresh air, or to binge a silly TV show. We need to allow ourselves to fill up our cup, in order to best help others and ourselves.

Practice mindfulness. Many people hold the belief that mindfulness is about closing your eyes and feeling relaxed and calm. However, this is in fact not the main goal of mindfulness. The idea is to be in the present moment, observing ourselves and our world, nonjudgmentally.

Taking time to close our eyes and noticing whatever thoughts and feelings arise can be helpful to orient ourselves in the here and now. Grounding ourselves in our environment by paying attention through our five senses allows us to be in the present moment and most accurately determine what we need at this time.

Lean on support. Whether you can seek support through a therapist or friend, it is important to have trusted people in your life to go to when times are hard. We can find ways to support ourselves, such as journaling, expressing ourselves through the arts, or going for a run to expend energy. Creating connection with others can also help us feel less alone. If you are a therapist yourself, finding professional and personal outlets is essential, in order to be the best and healthiest therapists we can be for ourselves and our clients.

The truth is, horrible events are taking place in our world, and it is important to honor our feelings as they arise. And, while tragedy is occurring, we can find glimmers of hope through self-care, accepting and validating our emotions and finding strength through community. We need to practice skills to both accept our limitations and barriers, while also fostering resiliency and empowering ourselves to make change for the better where we can. Listen to other people’s perspectives, advocate for what’s right and wrong and be willing to take breaks for yourself.

What is one step you can take to honor your emotions today?

ADAA Blog Content and Blog Comments Policy

ADAA provides this Website blogs for the benefit of its members and the public. The content, view and opinions published in Blogs written by our personnel or contributors – or from links or posts on the Website from other sources – belong solely to their respective authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of ADAA, its members, management or employees. Any comments or opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors only. Please remember that the open and real-time nature of the comments posted to these venues makes it is impossible for ADAA to confirm the validity of any content posted, and though we reserve the right to review and edit or delete any such comment, we do not guarantee that we will monitor or review it. As such, we are not responsible for any messages posted or the consequences of following any advice offered within such posts. If you find any posts in these posts/comments to be offensive, inaccurate or objectionable, please contact us via email at [email protected] and reference the relevant content. If we determine that removal of a post or posts is necessary, we will make reasonable efforts to do so in a timely manner.

ADAA expressly disclaims responsibility for and liabilities resulting from, any information or communications from and between users of ADAA’s blog post commenting features. Users acknowledge and agree that they may be individually liable for anything they communicate using ADAA’s blogs, including but not limited to defamatory, discriminatory, false or unauthorized information. Users are cautioned that they are responsible for complying with the requirements of applicable copyright and trademark laws and regulations. By submitting a response, comment or content, you agree that such submission is non-confidential for all purposes. Any submission to this Website will be deemed and remain the property of ADAA.

The ADAA blogs are forums for individuals to share their opinions, experiences and thoughts related to mental illness. ADAA wants to ensure the integrity of this service and therefore, use of this service is limited to participants who agree to adhere to the following guidelines:

1. Refrain from transmitting any message, information, data, or text that is unlawful, threatening, abusive, harassing, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, that may be invasive of another ‘s privacy, hateful, or bashing communications – especially those aimed at gender, race, color, sexual orientation, national origin, religious views or disability.

Please note that there is a review process whereby all comments posted to blog posts and webinars are reviewed by ADAA staff to determine appropriateness before comments are posted. ADAA reserves the right to remove or edit a post containing offensive material as defined by ADAA.

ADAA reserves the right to remove or edit posts that contain explicit, obscene, offensive, or vulgar language. Similarly, posts that contain any graphic files will be removed immediately upon notice.

2. Refrain from posting or transmitting any unsolicited, promotional materials, “junk mail,” “spam,” “chain mail,” “pyramid schemes” or any other form of solicitation. ADAA reserves the right to delete these posts immediately upon notice.

3. ADAA invites and encourages a healthy exchange of opinions. If you disagree with a participant ‘s post or opinion and wish to challenge it, do so with respect. The real objective of the ADAA blog post commenting function is to promote discussion and understanding, not to convince others that your opinion is “right.” Name calling, insults, and personal attacks are not appropriate and will not be tolerated. ADAA will remove these posts immediately upon notice.

4. ADAA promotes privacy and encourages participants to keep personal information such as address and telephone number from being posted. Similarly, do not ask for personal information from other participants. Any comments that ask for telephone, address, e-mail, surveys and research studies will not be approved for posting.

5. Participants should be aware that the opinions, beliefs and statements on blog posts do not necessarily represent the opinions and beliefs of ADAA. Participants also agree that ADAA is not to be held liable for any loss or injury caused, in whole or in part, by sponsorship of blog post commenting. Participants also agree that ADAA reserves the right to report any suspicions of harm to self or others as evidenced by participant posts.


Evidence-based Tips & Strategies from our Member Experts


Block reference

Take Action

Find Help. Learn More. Support ADAA.

Written by lisebram

What do you think?


Is Your Child Struggling with Anxiety or OCD? Key Ingredients to Help Your Child Succeed


Too Exhausted or Busy to Hit the Gym? Check Out These Tips

Back to Top

Log In

Forgot password?

Forgot password?

Enter your account data and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Your password reset link appears to be invalid or expired.

Log in

Privacy Policy

To use social login you have to agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website. %privacy_policy%

Add to Collection

No Collections

Here you'll find all collections you've created before.