The new normal

Right now things might feel strange, they certainly don’t feel normal.

When we experience difficult or challenging situations so often we end up craving the way things were.

You might find yourself longing for the simple everyday things you used to do like working in an office building, travelling by train and seeing full shelves in the supermarket.

Once the situation passes you have to establish a new normal because challenges change you. It will be almost impossible to go back to the way things were because what you’re experiencing right now is significant.

We all have the opportunity to let this situation change us for the better. To become more resilient, self-aware and perhaps a little kinder or more thoughtful.

A different approach

When you’re trying to find a solution it can be easy to get stuck on one particular path. You want to believe that you can work things out so you trudge on hoping for the best.

Maybe you tell yourself that if things aren’t working out then you’re not working hard enough.

But sometimes the truth is you need a different approach to the situation.

It can be difficult to open up to a new way of doing things, especially when you’ve been trying one set way for so long.

However, if you’re willing to do something different even if it doesn’t solve the problem, you’ll probably find yourself closer to the solution.

Its okay to be you

A few words on self acceptance.

As you take the time to explore yourself you’re likely to discover all kinds of things: the good the bad and the ugly.

You might find that there are some things about yourself that have put you at a disadvantage and they’re not always easy to accept.

The things that make you different, the things that have to be explained in order for people to understand you, the things that make you uncomfortable and maybe it’s things you wish you could just bypass.

But these challenges, the things you find difficult are probably great learning opportunities or what I like to call growth points.

Of course that doesn’t make them any easier but what I’ve learnt is that the more you push back and resist the more challenging things become. Whereas, if you’re more open, willing to accept your circumstances and explain things to the right person (or people), the situation softens.

And once it softens it becomes more malleable and in turn more manageable until eventually you overcome it or learn to handle it better.

Difficult but necessary

For some people there are certain conversations they’d rather not have.

It’s the difficult ones that we avoid where we have to be vulnerable. And maybe you get that swirly feeling in your stomach that you take as a sign not to go through those conversations.

But when you avoid them all that stuff just builds up and eventually comes out in unideal ways. It’s like not repairing a crack in a wall and all of a sudden the wall caves in.

In these situations you have to be responsible and admit that you’re the one that avoided the very thing you needed to do.

And that’s okay at least you know for next time. The conversations you’re afraid to haveĀ  are difficult but necessary but like all life situations.

We can’t go over it.
We can’t go under it.
Oh no!
We’ve got to go through it!

From the 1989 children’s book We’re going on a bear hunt by Michael Rosen

Everybody’s got a thing

Everybody is going through something, you’re not alone.

It’s like that Pfunk song goes ‘I’ve got a thing, you’ve got a thing, everybody’s got a thing,

And so if each one of us has a thing that we’re dealing with alongside living our lives then we shouldn’t use that as an excuse.

It is so easy to use your life circumstances as the reasons why you can’t do the things you daydream about. You might find yourself saying or thinking:

If it wasn’t for…

I know it can get difficult (I’ve got a thing too, remember) but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t even try.

Giving up

Sometimes when things look difficult the first thing you want to do is give up.

After all there’s no way you can do it. You’re not smart enough, you’ll fail or someone else can do it better than you.

But sometimes it’s more than that. Maybe the truth is that this difficult thing will force you to challenge yourself and you won’t have the option to hide away.

You’ll have to accept that there’s nothing wrong with not being good at something, with having to ask for help or with not being confident with something that is new.

There is vulnerability in taking on new challenges and knowing that they will force you to grow.

It might be scary but it could be a good thing.