If the news lately is getting you down, you're not alone.
From the Supreme Court to the refugee crisis to climate change, a lot of really big things are happening right now. These topics feel as though they're out of our control, making it easy for despair and apathy to settle in.
By now, we all know the drill: Vote, support organizations that share our values, and cultivate meaningful human relationships. Still, cynicism cuts through it all — or at least it can, if you let it.
But across social media, people are sharing powerful messages of hope and inspiration.
With the aforementioned assortment of anxieties affecting the world, let's take a look at some of these motivational messages.
1. Progress is a marathon, not a sprint.
Civil rights icon Congressman John Lewis (D-Georgia) called on people not to lose themselves in a "sea of despair" following disheartening news about the Supreme Court. If anyone would know about doing the right thing and overcoming challenges, it'd be Lewis.
Do not get lost in a sea of despair. Be hopeful, be optimistic. Our struggle is not the struggle of a day, a week,… https://t.co/giF40CvHE1— John Lewis (@John Lewis) 1530112503
2. It's OK to be scared, but remember that history is made up of scared people who changed the world anyway.
Writer John Paul Brammer offered an important reminder about fear and channeling it into progress.
3. Keep your eyes forward.
Hindsight is 20/20, and "Hamilton" creator Lin-Manuel Miranda relayed an important message about looking to the past for inspiration about your own progress, not to stay within it.
Gnight. Call off the troops on the battles you’ve already survived. Don’t waste time relitigating moments that are… https://t.co/5viVDdScTV— Lin-Manuel Miranda (@Lin-Manuel Miranda) 1530155340
4. Take a deep breath and know that others stand with you.
Newscaster Dan Rather shared some poignant thoughts on his Facebook page, calling on people to "turn to your left and right and see the long lines of fellow citizens" who share your drive to create change.
5. It takes patience and impatience to create change in the world.
Let America Vote founder Jason Kander shared some words of wisdom from his time as Missouri's Secretary of State, touching on the importance of being impatient enough to resist complacency while still remaining patient enough to see your goals through to the end.
Impatient enough to stay aggressive in advancing the greatest changes you seek, yet patient enough never to quit on… https://t.co/fXuD8AGbgt— Jason Kander (@Jason Kander) 1530139438
Now accept the fact that you still have to try, because—as President Obama taught us—progress is a baton we pass to… https://t.co/RmbRNnOrBE— Jason Kander (@Jason Kander) 1530139595
6. Hope is a choice we make — and so is despair.
Writers Ashley C. Ford and Steve Marmel simply reject the ideas of despair and hopelessness. You can, too.
It’s only hopeless if you give up hope.— Steve Marmel 💉 💉 💉 (@Steve Marmel 💉 💉 💉) 1530152916
7. Never stop fighting, even when the outcome looks certain.
Commentator and podcast host Erin Gloria Ryan offered a word of caution to people claiming the Supreme Court's landmark Roe v. Wade case is in imminent danger, sharing a bit of history from 1992.
It's entirely possible that a more conservative court will move to overturn the ruling, but we shouldn't give up hope just yet.
8. If you lose hope, you lose. That's what your adversaries want.
Writer Alex Steffen reminds people that giving up on hope is the first step towards giving up altogether. "Embrace defiant optimism," he wrote.
Our enemies have a goal: They want you to first give up hope, then just give up altogether. Despair is their tool.… https://t.co/Hi4gSEcMhb— Alex Steffen (@Alex Steffen) 1530155521
9. Don't dismiss the whole as the result of a few. Small acts of good add up over time.
Author Celeste Ng asked her Twitter followers to promote inclusivity whenever possible. You may not win everyone over, but you'll surely find success with some.
There may be situations--even people--you give up as a lost cause. That's okay. But don't give up hope that the maj… https://t.co/O3wanYDaxM— Celeste Ng (@Celeste Ng) 1530104910
10. The world sometimes takes two steps forward and one step back. If we stay focused, we can step forward once again.
Brittany Packnett believes people should look to the past — just not our own. "I come from people not meant to survive," she wrote.
As individuals, we might not be able to change much.
But as a unified force, we can make all the difference in the world.