Right now a lot of people are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel, the slow return to normalcy. Granted it’ll be a long time until things are back to how they were but as they say ‘slow progress is better than no progress’.
This normality will be positive for some and for others, something they are dreading.
There are people that have been furloughed from jobs they don’t want to back to.
There are people who have finally been able to live without feeling obligated to be social.
There are people who miss being in the presence of friends, family and lovers.
There are people who miss going to work.
But I think that what many are forgetting is that even when things go back to the normal, it won’t be same, too much has happened.
A pandemic is a pretty big deal.
It’s changed us.
When you’re comfortable with the way things are it can be difficult to make the choice to change.
Most people have dreams of the kind of life that they want yet they allow their feelings of comfort to stand in the way.
The inner monologue will say something like ‘Why move to a new city, when you have everything here. Why would you want to be away from your friends and family?’.
Those kinds of thoughts totally underestimate our capabilities as human beings.
If you move to a new city and hate it, you can always move back. When it comes to friends and family of course you’ll miss them but it’s not like you’ll never see them again. Also you’ll make new friends and meet new people.
So often people don’t allow themselves to grow because they’re stuck on feeling comfortable instead of being open to exploring life.
You spend a large amount of your formative years trying to figure yourself out. You’re favourite colour, what you like to eat and the kinds of movies you like to watch.
But it goes much deeper than that. Perhaps it’s what political party you want to support, your career path, whether you want to get married or have kids, who your friends are, your opinion on world issues and the sort of place you want to live.
However, sometimes these things change. Perhaps you wanted to be an Accountant at 19 but years later you now want to be a Visual Merchandiser.
Changing your path might feel difficult because it goes against the person you thought you were, the character of you that you created.
Suddenly other aspects of yourself may no longer seem to fit because one part of you has changed.
This is the point where many choose not to change.
I’ve wanted to be an accountant for long so I may as well stick with it.
It’s going to be so hard to become a Visual Merchandiser so I may as well stick with a more stable option.
The thing is though you’re allowed to change, not only from childhood to adulthood but day to day.
As you gain new experiences, your perspectives will change. Don’t reject your development and hold yourself back.
Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither were helpful habits.
If you want to start reading more, getting up at 6am every morning, eating more nourishing food or committing to your creative projects, one day won’t make a difference on it’s own.
It’s a series of days, one by one, bit by bit that make the real difference.
One day isn’t enough to build a habit but that’s where things start. That one day will become 30 days and then 90 until that thing you’ve been doing each day is now part of your daily routine.
When you’re getting started, it’s worth remembering that change takes time. Don’t be disappointed after 3 days if you don’t feel like it, your brain is still getting used to your new way of doing things. Instead focus on it one day at a time and remember that you’re working towards something long-term.
And on days when you don’t feel like practicing your new habit, it won’t matter in the short-run but in the long run you’ll probably be glad you committed to it.
That thing that you’re not interested in, that you don’t think is for you, it might be one day.
It takes time for the mind to open up to things, especially when they’re different or new.
This could apply to the music you listen to, shows you watch or even the food that you eat.
One day you’re telling everyone that you don’t do comedy, you don’t find it funny and you much prefer a drama.
Then years later you’re sat at home watching the office (US), snorting with laughter thankful that you changed your mind about the kind of shows you watch.
The thing with your taste changing over time is that it’s part of your development. You don’t need to force yourself to be a certain way right now just because it’s something on the path you’re heading down.
Be patient, remain open and allow the changes to happen naturally.
Talking about how unhappy you are with where you’re at is easy to do. Talking about the changes you want to happen in your life is also pretty easy.
But when it comes to actually turning those thoughts into plans, things tend to get a little more challenging.
First of all, there is the familiarity factor. There is comfort in familiarity. Just the fact that your current circumstance is what you’re used to will make it difficult for you to move on from it to something new.
Then, there is the commitment to the change you want.
Lastly, there is the risk ‘what if it doesn’t work?’
All of that is enough to convince many people to stay exactly where they are. Or they tell themselves they’ll make the changes slowly over time. But often those efforts are half-hearted.
What you might need to do is take a leap a faith. Launch yourself into the unknown, fully committed and knowing that you can handle whatever challenges come your way.
Sometimes that’s the only way to make changes in your life.
Is to start.
Not soon, not later and not tomorrow but now.
So often we find ourselves overwhelmed by our ever-growing to-do lists that we end up thinking more planning, more thinking and more organising is the way forward. But at the crux of it all without taking action, nothing is going to change.
You’ll be surprised at how at ease you feel once you start getting things done and actually commit to it for a chunk of time wholeheartedly instead of half-heatedly. Not long after starting you’ll find yourself getting into the flow of it and the anxious feels will begin to simmer.
Often it is merely the thought of doing the work that is causing you to feel overwhelmed not actually doing it.