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Getting Involved With Politics: A Unconventional Way To Deal With Grief

Category: 

Grieving Process

Posted On: Oct 10, 2016

Getting Involved With Politics: A Unconventional Way To Deal With Grief

Regardless of your political beliefs, most of us believe that politics are important, voting is important, and it's important to be aware and involved.

But when you're grieving, a breakthrough step in the right direction is the understanding that life does go on, and life is much bigger than one person. So one excellent way to channel that newfound belief is to become a force for good, whatever that means to you. Here are some ways to channel that new force, politically:

Get informed

Humans have a nasty habit of finding a few sources for news or information that confirm what we already believe, and not seeking out or taking in any information beyond that.

Don't fall into that trap. While it's important to read and learn why people with views that oppose yours feel the way they feel, it's just as important to find neutral sources for information, especially academic ones. Have studies been down that show one approach is better than others? Are there precedents and tests for other approaches?  A person who is well-informed politically, from all angles, is the person who sets himself up to make the wisest, most informed decisions when deciding who to vote for, who to donate to, and so forth.

Think and speak for yourself

That said, you are entitled to, and should express, your own moral compass. You may have all the information, but no one can tell you how to feel about that information. It's important, then, to formulate opinions, and to be unafraid to express them. Freedom of speech is a pillar of many countries and cultures – use it if you are fortunate enough to live in one of these cultures.

A diversity of thought and opinion is important in the marketplace of ideas, so add your voice to that marketplace and help your country, city, or even just neighborhood thrive. Plus, it's something to think about other than your grief.

Volunteer

The most important one of these, far and away. Everything good or bad that has ever happened politically on this earth is because people worked towards it happening. This is where the “force” in “force for good” comes into play.

A lot of people think volunteering, particularly for political campaigns, solely involves the uncomfortable business of trying to persuade people to take your side on an issue or a candidate. The truth is, that function constitutes very little of political volunteerism, and campaigns are loathe to put volunteers, who are giving up their own time for free after all, to work doing something they don't want to do.  Some other important tasks you can do are drive senior citizens to the polls on election day, put together and erect yard and highway signs, stuff and send out envelopes and other packages to be mailed, even cooking or buying supplies for other volunteers who might be stuck on the phone or stumping door-to-door for much of the day.  Each of these volunteer roles matters just as much as any other role, and it's an outstanding way to make a difference.