And Other Things That Make Us Stutter...
Like it or not, 2020 has been a major catalyst of change for most of us. For some of us, the changes we have been facing are for the most part internal; from the outside it looks like it's business as usual. For others, the changes 2020 has ushered in have been stark, drastically public, and outside their control.
During times of drastic change, we're all forced to evaluate our priorities, and how we are going to react. Most other aspects are outside our control, right? This is true whether the crises faced are personal and private, or it's our whole society swept up into the currents of history together, forced to participate.
Very seldom is it the situations within our control that make us break into a cold sweat and stutter with uncertainty. I've found that the times in my life when I was facing uncertainty, when fear seemed to be keeping me frozen, taking a moment to evaluate my overall attitude, helps me to stop the spinning in my head. What things I do have control over? Do I need to stop and allow myself a moment to regroup? Pausing is always a choice!
All great changes are preceded by chaos. Deepak Chopra
I must admit that sometimes, when I've had times of being totally overwhelmed with change, I've not always been great at gracefully appreciating the chaos proceeding my new reality. In fact, I'm sure there were plenty of temper tantrums I threw during times of crises! I'm not very proud of them retrospect, but with Aris Rising in my astrology chart, temper tantrums may have been some of my better options. What can I say, nobody's perfect and we all have to learn to take control of our reactions, and this is one I have been working on since I was two years old! (Trust me, it's gotten better 🙂 But once the temper tantrum is over, I consider there may have been a better way to react, and get down to the business of creating a plan to adjust to the changes coming at me.
It is in the turmoil of chaos that we discover what, if anything, we are. Orson Scott Card
As I become more mature, and better at controlling my reaction in the middle of uncontrollable situations, I'm learning the art of the pause. If I don't have control of anything else, I have control over reacting immediately, or taking a pause. I'm not always able to do this, but when I am, I always feel more capable of choosing my reaction. Sometimes I just need to give myself a beat. Of all the acts of kindness I have learned to give myself, this one may be the one that helps me the most.
I sometimes have to give myself permission to find stillness in anyway I can when trying to survive, and regain my sense of sanity during times of chaos. This looks different for me when I am processing different types of chaos. There are times when I have to give myself permission to take a nap if I feel like I need one, or a leisurely walk with no particular goal in mind. Meditation and Prayer can be useful, but if my head is spinning too much, and I need to find a way to slow myself down, a walk, yoga, or tai chi can help me to connect my body, mind and spirit in ways that help me to find my center again.
Attempting to do anything you haven't done before is always uncomfortable, and usually scary, but it is ALWAYS worth it. Fear disappears in the midst of action, and a better version of yourself awaits you on the other side of your fear. Feel the fear, and do it anyway. Hal Elrod
This year we have all been asked to deal with things we never thought we would be faced with. Some of us are making choices that will forever change the trajectory of our lives. For some of us, the choices we are making will impact many of the people we love. There is no one right way to live through such extraordinary times. As far as I can see, most of us are just doing the best we can and hoping we get to the other side in one piece.
My changes have been largely about accepting what is, and letting go of what is not for me. I am also taking stock of my own responsibility for the changes in my life, and how my world is shaped. I find it very interesting to observe how hard it is to allow others to make their own choices. One of the most difficult things to understand and accept can be that my choices are mine, but your choices are yours, and nobody can change that simple reality, and we all deserve that respect.
I would love to hear how this year is going, what is changing for you, and what you are changing for yourself! Please share your thoughts and let us know what you think of 2020 as we all reflect, and push through the last few months of a year we all seem to be ready to let go of!