As the year comes to a close, I would like to invite you to participate in two interesting programs with me:
Intuition: Myths, Science, and Practice (a workshop for analytical thinkers) on Dec. 15th. (Use this link if you don’t use Facebook).
Holiday Special. 1.5 hour New Year Strategic Planning Session: you can save 25%, and for each session during the promotion, I donate $100 to a musical education program in public schools. Where would you like to be a year from now? Let’s figure it out together.
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A year ago, did you think you would be where you are now, geographically, professionally, and psychologically? Which changes did you anticipate, and which ones hit you like a ton of bricks? Are there changes you expected to happen, but they never did? I would love to hear all about it.
Sharing is not easy. Well, the bragging part is easy: I’m happy to tell you about completing two PhD classes in flying colors this year, having a book chapter accepted for publication, making new friends half way around the world only to learn that these wonderful people live in our town, working with amazing new corporate and private clients, participating in a learning adventure for the whole family and meeting more great people through it… Talking about things that didn’t go according to plan is not easy at all.
During the holidays, we feel the effect of changes (and sometimes, lack of changes) especially keenly. Whether changes are perceived as positive or negative, they can cause stress.
What can be done to reduce change-related stress in our lives?
- EXPECT changes. If you are attached to the way things used to be, it must be frustrating for you to continue looking at the gap between “the way things were back then” and “the way things are now”. Don’t look at this gap. Instead, see what is. “This is the way things are now”. Your body is has changed, obviously. Your crowd of friends has (partially) changed as you grew. Your work requirements have changed. Your parents are changing, and so are your children. Your feelings change. The weather is changing by the hour; political situation in the world is changing rapidly. Nothing will stay the same. Nothing. And it is natural.
- Decide whether your action/reaction is required. Just because things are not the way they used to be, does not mean you are required to do something about it. You don’t have to react. Observe. See how things are, and let them be. Sometimes, a reaction will pour out of you, or wash over you, like a wave of grief. Observe it, be with it, but you don’t have to do anything about it. If you want to take action, take one that makes you feel more at ease, more like yourself.
- “Don’t do unto yourself what you wouldn’t do unto someone else.” (Martha Beck). How would you treat a person you care about during a major change in their lives? How would you see your friend through, when he really wanted a change that never happened? Give yourself the same courtesy that you would to a person you love: some breathing room, some optimism, some time of just being present, safe space to vent, cry or be angry, etc. YOU are worth of all of these things as well.
Here are some ideas that may be helpful if you are dealing with things not being the way they used to be:
I am thankful for you presence with me this year. Would you share with me what you would like to see happen in your life in 2020?