Give yourself an occasional break from the news cycleMissionBox co-founder and CEO Kathryn Engelhardt-Cronk tackles the issue of managing the stress and pressures that commonly come with working for a nonprofit with Self-Care: Simple Tips for Managing Nonprofit Stress. We invite MissionBox readers to share their ideas and responses, which may be published here as well.
The opinions offered here are based on the author's personal nonprofit experience and may not reflect the opinions of MissionBox, Inc. These opinions should not be considered legal advice or used as a substitute for professional legal consultation.
Lately, everyone is telling me that they can no longer bear to listen to the news: endless sexual abuse allegations, tax reform designed to benefit the wealthy, unending gun violence, an impending war with North Korea, catastrophic climate change and the White House collusion with Russia to win the presidency — all of it. It’s important to stay informed, but I also need a break from this insanity.
I have found that I do best, and am most cheerful and relaxed when I bring a hearty dose of comedy to my day. Fox News, MSNBC, CNN and other media outlets can make the even the most optimistic individual ponder the end of the world as an inevitable outcome. Whether on TV or radio, comedy makes me forget my troubles for just a few minutes by making me laugh. It’s fabulous therapy for my currently bewildered and pessimistic mind.
I try to spend as much time listening to comedy on the radio as I listen to news — minute for minute. My work commute has become a pleasure instead of a plunge into anxiety and I am learning more about a comedic view of the world. If crying won’t change things, maybe a laugh will. Re-energizing with Jim Gaffigan or Anthony Jeselnik provides me with enough relief to get out there and try to do some good in the world.
Comedy is also an education regarding our culture, our taboos and what makes a human laugh. It’s not an exercise in “dumbing down" or ignoring reality, it’s an opportunity to gain insight and have fun. I recommend it.
CEO, MissionBox Inc.
What do our nonprofit readers think? We would love to hear about your own ways of handling nonprofit stress. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.