Change Agents — take care of yourselves, we need you
I have always been a change agent. Wanting to make a better world for people and nature. And most of the time I thrive on it.
But I have also burnt out badly multiple times.
Being a change agent can be hard and lonely.
Especially if you’re challenging sacred cows. Which you will if tackling climate and ecological breakdown is your game. Everybody wants to do something to tackle them, but nobody wants to do what’s actually needed. People want simple solutions to complex problems. They don’t exist.
And it’s hard to stop if you’re mission driven.
My husband often tells me I need a break at weekends. Stop with the books and the podcasts that keep you informed. But oh so close to the worst of everything.
From his perspective it’s work. From mine — it’s all that matters. If we don’t address these issues then we are collectively screwed. In my lifetime let alone for those who come after.
But I am also reminded of what an old mentor used to say — the most important thing for change agents is to stay in the game.
So hubby is right and she was too.
Even though it is hard, I do my best to stop now. Slow down so I can really connect and be present. Get out of my head and into my body more. Listen to music and inspiring podcasts. Read stories. Garden. Cycle. Meditate. Nap. Enjoy some good TV. Talk and laugh with those I love.
And when I do those things I feel more refreshed. More able to cope with the stresses, strains and underpinning anxiety of going against the grain.
So if you are a change agent too, please look after yourself in whatever ways work for you. Prioritise your wellbeing because, even though it doesn’t feel like it, we’re in a marathon, not a sprint. And we need you.
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