Don't fret the coming year

Dear Minerva,

As 2017 is ending, and we're about to start 2018, I've never felt this afraid in my life. The world has changed a great deal in just one year. I feel like I'm clinging to a lot of negativity. I feel helpless as to how to change this world as it careens into hopelessness. I'm angry but paralyzed by the fear that comes with it.



Dear Uneasy,

I know you aren't alone in how you're feeling—2017 has been a doozy, and every day, the headlines seem more and more bleak. This isn't the first time in history there have been dark times. While I understand and empathize with the heavy burden it feels like we are carrying, I do have some suggestions. Keep doing good things. It is hard to see what good can be done when the big picture looks so daunting. Get out into your life and your community. Help those around you. Change can start small, and living your convictions in your own community helps spread love and joy. Avoid screaming into the void. A lot of pain comes from constantly interacting with people you disagree with on social media. Funnel that energy into creating a better life in real life. Don't stop enjoying things. As Lana Del Rey sings, "When the world was at war before, we just kept dancing." Don't stop doing the things that makes life worth living and fighting for. Integrity, authenticity and fierce persistence are always in style.

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