I’m more than a little conflicted, when it comes to the violent videos released for public viewing. I understand the need for awareness and the public wanting to see/know the details for themselves, but it reminds me of the days when it was a common practice for slave masters to publicly beat, rape, and lynch black people to inflict fear and control. The frequency of these events alone are enough to traumatize those who are commonly victimized, so the videos have to be psychologically damaging, and, personally, they are wearing my spirit out.
My concern is how do we as people of color reclaim our spirit and energy to work productively, after witnessing these violent incidents?
Civic Engagement and Political Consultant
Thank you for expressing your thoughts so eloquently regarding your concern over the violent videos that are being shown. Your anxiety reflects the same deep upset and anger that I hear about from people of all races and religions.
I encourage people to reclaim and energize their souls by volunteering for organizations that assist vulnerable populations – children, the elderly, refugees, and the homeless. It is important for anyone who feels affected by the violence to listen to their intuition and to talk to others about their “bad feelings,” rather than suppressing their emotions to the point where they want to explode.
Burying or stuffing our emotions inside often can lead to tempers flaring out of control, which can result in violent reactions. There are definite warning signs to your emotions reaching overload; you may feel a tightening in your stomach, a pain in your head, or feel constantly afraid. It’s common for many people to dismiss these signs of unease, because they can’t describe what is going on inside to others. Whenever you watch a video depicting violence, take a moment to process how deeply you feel for the people who are killed, injured, or jailed. It is important that we do not view these events as so commonplace that we fail to recognize that the people being shown are hurting at a very deep level.
We need to express concern for the officers who are policing our communities with integrity. First responders face incredibly high stress levels working in the midst of the violence. This can lead to stressful relationships with everyone they are interacting with. Just as people of color do not want to be all lumped together, we must be careful not to believe all police officers as being bad.
It is normal to feel upset and agitated whenever we watch a human life being senselessly taken. There’s so much stress and tension in our lives these days, that it is important to pay attention to warning signs which indicate that our emotions have reached a boiling point. Let’s face it, it is hard to take a step back and observe our own behavior. Even when we are not aware of it our thoughts, feelings, and emotions are being silently communicated to others. If you find yourself feeling particularly tense over violent events, it is a good idea to refrain from sending emails or texts. Allowing anger, hate, or fear to permeate our thoughts and feelings can impact the wellness in our bodies, as well as affect our personal and professional relationships.
Here are tips to help recognize and change negative emotions in your life:
- Stay tuned in to your feelings and discuss your concerns with people you trust and respect.
- Limit watching violent videos before bedtime.
- Keep your energy clear by taking a few minutes each to feel hope and love for the people in your life and for the whole universe.
Intuitive life strategist, Sheree Franklin, helps people to find the courage to release their life challenges in order to live in alignment with their true self. She is the author of Intuition: The Hidden Asset Everyone Should Learn to Use. Sheree Franklin is a practitioner at Holistic Health Practice at One East Superior, in Chicago. You can email your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. Her practice includes one-to-one coaching as corporate workshops. For more information, go to www.shereefranklin.com or call 312-664-8376.