Chaos for me — on a personal scale — really ramps up my anxiety. I am a flexible person and I am not locked into a strict routine or schedule, but when things get crazy, confused, or I am dealing with indecisive people, I get anxious rather than mad. My daughter has anxiety (it runs in the family expressing itself in different ways), and she gets mad — her escape valve is anger — of the verbal kind, not physical. When I get over-stressed, I just want to hide, to get away from the stressors. I may become impatient, but anger is not my vehicle for reducing stress! (For me anger causes anxiety.)
Stress is so common these days, and often its because the world around us is in chaos. I think the constant news — even the broadcast channels air news for three hours in the morning and at night — can be overwhelming. Watching all the chaos in the world, the sadness, the horrors, the killings: they just make me feel impotent, so my only answer is to ignore them, to turn off me, not necessarily the TV. There is so little we can do about the problems in the world at large, and even the world nearby. It’s hard enough controlling chaos in one’s own family and sphere of “influence”.
Recently in my area of the country an armed Homeland Security man went on a shooting spree killing at least three people in three locations, finally fatally shooting his wife who was the object of his anger-let-loose and the resulting violence. His life was in chaos, and his answer was “F..k it — I hate people, I hate life, I hate what’s happening to me,” and that hatred turned to killing. Why he didn’t kill himself too, I don’t know. That’s often the last sentence to these horrific stories.
Loss of control, real or perceived, makes us feel powerless, depressed, anxious — some people drink, take drugs, zone out, escape. Oddly enough, there are people who embrace chaos. Some immensely successful businessmen and women, work with a passion and compulsion because they feel than can restore order in their world, turn the chaos into action, and find success. Good for them. Some do overcome it.
I won’t digress too much into the political chaos we are experiencing, but what a show: The professional politicians’ world has been turned upside down with the unforeseen success of a experienced (if sometimes ruthless) businessman. Who could have know how disgruntled the population is at entrenched, elitist politicians. That’s the message: government overreach, a Congress that no longer represents the people who voted in representatives and Senators, laws and regulations than hinder growth, development, and success. The government’s hand in every pie. Now some people hate Trump, but the message is clear: people are unhappy with the way the government and democracy have changed. The are tired of the political elite. Ordinary working men and women may lose their jobs — but it takes a year to two to fire a government employee — and there are multitudes of them. Don’t kill the messenger; heed the message. Chaos reigns at the moment in the political theater.