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Finding Hope in Dark Times

"In light of recent events, I want to express that finding hope in especially difficult times can be hard. Our brains are good at finding danger, because that’s our instinctive attempt to keep ourselves safe. Trauma responses include “fight, flight, freeze, and fawn,” but another trauma response that isn’t talked about enough is “find;” that is, searching for more information. We think that by understanding something we can keep ourselves safe. But sometimes all that information seeking has the opposite effect of creating more stress on our nervous system. Turning our attention to those who are helping, and to the good things happening in our families, communities, and all over the world, takes effort. Attending to the good is not ignoring our own or others’ pain—it’s reminding ourselves that both pain and joy exist, often side by side. As Glennon Doyle says, “We can do hard things, because we belong to each other."' - Amber Keating LCSW

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