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The Fight for World Peace Vol. 2: Expressing Peace

Bridget Kane, Features/Humans of SJV Editor, Writer

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We are the world, we are the children

             We are the ones who make a brighter day

             So let’s start giving

             There’s a choice we’re making

             We’re saving our own lives

             It’s true we’ll make a better day

            Just you and me” We Are the World, Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie

 

These simple lyrics by two timeless singers/songwriters have been played countless times over the past 32, and still manage to fill our hearts with love and joy. These lyrics make us reflect on what is really happening in our world, and it can be pretty scary for anyone. Though, why should the violent voices filled with anger and hate only be heard? It’s time for the world to hear the voices of the peaceful, the people who are dedicated to changing the world, one small gesture at a time. I’m here to help anyone who wants to make a change find peaceful, simple ways to make the world a happier place.

Before you go out and change the world, you first need to find peace within yourself. Whether it be school, work, or the world, it’s a known fact that stress eats up happiness. According to a 2015 study done by the American Psychological Association (APA), 45 percent of teenagers feel as though they are extremely stressed. When you are stressed, you can feel easily overwhelmed, especially with the thought of changing of the world! Experts say one of the best ways to get rid of stress is to meditate. Meditation is the ancient art of finding inner peace by listening to simple commands and learning to relax. You can find hundreds of meditation videos online, and if one doesn’t work for you, try another.

If meditation is not for you, there are plenty of other ways to get rid of stress and negativity in your mind, whether it be exercising, watching your favorite movie, or hanging out with friends. Without unnecessary stress, the world will be a much calmer, peaceful place.

The next step is the best advice I ever received, and that is to start small. My mom always reminds me that one person can only do so much, and that is true for everyone. What you want to create is a chain reaction of happiness. For example, have you ever noticed how laughter is so contagious? It’s because you are sharing your enthusiasm with  the world, and that’s exactly what you want to do. In fact, you can try that experiment in a public place, and I can assure you that you will get multiple people to laugh and smile. Little gestures like smiling, laughing, or a small, heartfelt compliment could turn around someone’s bad day.

Another helpful action you can do is lend a helping hand whenever you can. If you know that there is a food drive in your town, try and make time to volunteer there, or make a donation to a foundation that helps the less fortunate, such as the Red Cross. However, you don’t have to do this alone. Get some friends and family together and just have fun with it! Remember, volunteering shouldn’t feel forced. Do it when you feel like it, because sometimes, responsibilities get in the way of volunteering, and that is okay. If you are a busy person who does not have a lot of time to volunteer, try simple gestures such as holding the door or helping a neighbor carry in their groceries. Changing the world does not have to be in huge, unforgettable gestures. Sometimes, the simplest things in life, like a friendly smile, are the best things in life.

My assignment for you this week, dear reader, is to lend a helping hand to someone. It could be a neighbor, friend, or family member. If you see them struggling, offer to help! You can even lend a helping hand to yourself. If you notice that you are extremely stressed or upset, help yourself and try to be your own hero today. With small gestures from everyone, we can all change the world, because happiness is contagious, and so is peace.

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The Fight for World Peace Vol. 2: Expressing Peace