Ed note: the following a guest submission by Harry Hoofcloppen, (Satanist, Colorado) on the subject of self-care and avoiding burnout. -Jack
In these tumultuous times, Trump has declared a war on immigrant humans. The Christian Right continues its war on LGBT humans. The GOP has stepped up its war on female humans. There’s plenty for the activist Satanist to be angry about. My Facebook feed is a continuous scroll of alarm, dismay, anger, fear, angst, and grief. But to let those feelings overwhelm you is to sacrifice your health to their causes; stress can literally kill you.
True, we need dedication, drive, and focused purpose. Without them, we lose our impetus to act. But if you let those feelings consume you instead of simply galvanizing your resolve, chronic stress can cause health problems like high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.
Elevated cortisol levels (the stress hormone) can damage your learning and memory, and lower your immune function. Stress can cause anxiety and depression, and it can increase your risk of drug or alcohol misuse.
As we start to find our feet in the fight against these rising threats to liberty, be aware of the negative impact on your health that comes with letting the negative emotions consume you. It can reduce the quality of your life and it can shorten your life as well.
Tips to reduce your stress:
- Accept that some things are beyond your control: Aside from spreading awareness, there’s nothing you can directly do once, say, the Supreme Court is mulling a case. They don’t respond to petitions and opinions like representatives do. Other such situations exist where we spend unrealistic energy and angst on things that we need to let go, and marshal our reserves for something else, something we can be effective at.
- Exercise regularly and eat well: It’s too easy to skip these when we’re busy or upset. Remember to get out for some exercise and eat a balanced meal.
- Keep a positive attitude: You got this. We got this. Together, we will rise to the challenges and bring the fight. We can share our voices and actions and be proud of our effort without letting the anger consume us. If you have an altar, use it. If you meditate, do it. If you have hobbies, indulge them. The struggle for justice is ongoing; it will never end. That’s so eternally true that it’s our number two tenet. So chin-up… you’re advancing the causes of
human equality and liberty!
- Don’t skip the fun chapter stuff: Social support and doing fun things together help to cement our interpersonal relationships when we’re working on a cause.
- If you feel overwhelmed, reach out: Seek treatment with a therapist or psychiatrist if you are overwhelmed by stress or you feel at risk for self-harm. If you’re in a dark place, 911 is your friend. After all, you’re fighting to help society, and it’s there to help you right back.
Hail Satan/Ave Satanas!
–footnotes– NPR News  Mayo Clinic  Web MD
I have a Patreon! Please support For Infernal Use Only and get cool extra content. Patreon patrons support For Infernal Use Only in addition to Jack’s other projects. Have a look and check out Jack’s two new podcasts Ex Libris Obscura and Live! From the Public Domain in addition to his long running Naked Diner Podcast with co-host Andy Hall.