Last month, a 56-year-old man was arrested and charged with threatening Dr. Anthony Fauci—the chief medical advisor to President Biden on COVID-19, and as I’m sure you’re aware, one of the most visible faces of the pandemic.
As a rule, I’ve been trying to avoid the 24-hour news cycle (unless it directly relates to health matters). But when I heard about this, it really took me aback. Especially since this doesn’t seem to be an isolated incident. People have been threatening this man and his family online and in Washington for a while now.
Now, no matter what you think about Fauci (or the president, or this virus), you have to ask yourself: Is this really what the greatest nation on earth has come to?
I don’t know about you, but it makes me feel incredibly sad. So, I’d like to share some of my own personal thoughts here today, in the hopes of offering some insight into coping with an issue that affects every last one of us…
Chasing peace from the outside
I shelved writing about this subject until I could at least try to understand what the underlying issue really is.
Certainly, no one wants to wish actual death upon anyone. So I think the real reason behind this outrageous behavior is simple misdirection—of anger, frustration, and overall fatigue—toward one of the easiest targets.
And believe me, I know the feeling…
Each and every one of us have made decisions for ourselves and our families on how to cope with the past 18 months and counting. I know firsthand how exhausting this can be—and continues to be.
The change has been expansive for me. Many of my inner circle of friends and colleagues are nearing retirement age. As a result, a lot have decided to either scale back or leave the profession they love and have dedicated their entire lives to, prematurely. Perhaps that sounds like you or someone you love, too?
I have to imagine that much of America is feeling the pressure of the same kinds of choices—decisions that we may not have even considered before the year 2020. But since we all have our own coping mechanisms, every situation is going to be different.
Just look at the current real estate market—people are literally on the move, looking for something new, something better, something different. Others have taken up the “van life” to travel the country in search of contentment.
But in the end, one big question remains: Will it make you happy?
In some cases—not all—these pursuits are no more likely to restore a sense of peace than silencing certain voices (like Fauci’s). Because in the end, the inescapable facts of our new reality remain.
You control your story
I admit that I, myself, often fall victim to these same impulses. Fortunately, thanks to many years of therapy and self-help programs, I’ve gotten quite good at understanding exactly why I’m feeling the way I am… and then, only taking action after much contemplation.
In other words, I try not to be reactive. If what I hear angers, upsets, or frustrates me, I dig deep. I breathe and I meditate. And I only respond—I only act—after I have given myself the time and space to form a thoughtful opinion.
I don’t pretend to be a philosopher or even a self-help guru (unless we’re talking about physical health). But I must tell you a story…
I’m currently writing this Reality Health Check e-letter on a very isolated island—which I think of as my sanctuary and safe place. For those who follow me on social media, you may have even seen some videos of where I am.
(And trust me, it’s quite remote. As a matter of fact, I’m writing this without any electricity—for nine hours and counting! Luckily, my computer was charged before the power went out.)
Well, I was driving home from a friend’s house last night and was listening to our one radio station. And I was shocked when I heard them playing a broadcast discussing the spiritual guru and author Eckhart Tolle.
I listen to Tolle’s podcasts and read his books, and recommend both to patients all the time. I consider him to be a very wise man. And guess what? The topic of the discussion was anger and frustration with the pandemic…
His thoughts were what inspired me write this today, with one simple message: The bulk of this ongoing crisis exists beyond our control—but nevertheless, you control your pandemic experience.
That’s right. You control your story. Not anyone else.
Attacking Dr. Fauci, retiring early, moving, etc. won’t change the unprecedented circumstances that we’re all struggling with right now. But if you don’t like the story, you do have the power to change how you feel about it—as well as how you understand and see the situation.
So my cry to you is this: Please, let’s use that power for love—of both yourself and others—not for misdirected anger, frustration, and fatigue.
P.S. I’ve written various articles on how to naturally relieve stress—through mindfulness mediation, yoga, and more. All you have to do is search the archives. Subscribers to my monthly Logical Health Alternatives newsletter gain access to all of this, and more. So if you haven’t already, click here to become one today!
“Fighting Fauci: From Ridicule to Death Threats, Attacks Continue.” Medscape Medical News, 07/29/2021. (medscape.com/viewarticle/955687)