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Change Changes Us
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Change Changes Us

It is amazing how quickly summer left us, and fall moved in.  We all knew it was coming but the transition seemed to occur so quickly.  One day our air conditioners were humming, and we were enjoying the outdoors in light clothing and before we knew it, the air cooled to the point that we now need warm jackets. My patio has been transformed from a comfortable garden lounge to an area devoid of plants, umbrellas and brightly-coloured cushions.

And now we are waiting for yet another seasonal change – winter

Some changes occur so often and repetitively that we just expect and accept them.  We know that one month follows another.  One season is replaced by the next.  Children grow up and we grow older.  There is a rhythm to many things in life and we have learned to adapt.

Some people like change and look forward to it while others would prefer that things just stay the same.   Many who are planners have told me that it is very upsetting to think that they just can’t plan things now because there is so much uncertainly in the world.

The problem that everyone has been facing over the past couple of years is the idea of the “unknown”.  There have been significant changes in our lives that we didn’t predict, and many things have not been resolved.  Differing opinions about how to deal with the pandemic has left many people with feelings of high anxiety, lack of control and anger. Also, some have become so fearful and passionate about their own opinions that their relationships have been negatively affected.

One jurisdiction might promote a mandate that is very different from another jurisdiction.   And just when we think that we understand and have some control, things change – again!

The pandemic has affected the whole world in so many ways.   It has taken a huge toll on economies.   It has attacked the health of family, friends, and neighbours.  It has dominated the media and everyday conversations.  And it has cast a shadow over the future which cannot be easily predicted.

We certainly didn’t choose this pandemic or the effect that it has had on our lives.  Many things we cannot change.  What we can change, however, is our perspective

If you are constantly thinking about what might happen and catastrophizing, those thoughts will keep you in a state of crisis.  If you surround yourself with naysayers and negative media reports, you will feed the problem.

Dan Millman, an author and lecturer in the personal development field states: “You don’t have to control your thoughts.  You just have to stop letting them control you

Throughout the years, we have faced wars and trauma and illnesses and pain.  It was horrible to go through these things, but we need to remember that we are survivors.   Things didn’t always work out like we planned but many times we learned or changed in positive ways.

Yes, change does change us - but not always in a negative way

What advice can I give during these trying times?   Use your common sense.   Focus on today.   Eat nutritionally.   Get enough rest.  Screen intake.  Do things that you enjoy

Clinical psychologist Jordan Petersen teaches an interesting concept.  He recommends that you need to clean your room before you can change the world.   Look around you and see what things you can do right now to improve your personal environment.  Tiny steps.

We will get through this!   And in the meantime, we will welcome winter.

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About the Author

Dr. Hancock has written a regular weekly column entitled “All Psyched Up” for newspapers in two Canadian provinces for more than a dozen years...