Create Your New Normal

PlanningGoalsPersonPuzzle

(5 minute read)

The only guarantee in life is that it will be a challenging adventure for all who are willing to live it. Many things happen throughout the day, and even the most educated, well-off, and wealthy people are unable to control everything that could be thrown in their direction. Life is full of unsurety. What’s the best way to navigate through it? How do you recover from situations that overturn your world or knock you off your feet?

I recently read The Wives of Los Alamos: A Novel. This is a peculiarly written novel based on historical truths. It’s about a bunch of married women who had to drop everything in life that they knew and loved to remain with their husbands during a major career shift. Many of these women had children and were accustomed to living a comfortable lifestyle. Many were highly educated and sacrificed their careers to keep their families together during the shift which included relocation. On top of all of that, the work that their husbands had to do was extremely confidential. So, they couldn’t even know what their own husbands were working on. These women made a choice to give up everything they knew and loved without fully understanding why!

Many difficult situations in life happen without notice,  and without a person being able to make a choice about it. My point in bringing up this novel is that I was impressed by what these women overcame during this period in their lives. They endured living in homes with minimal plumbing and without the normal appliances and conveniences that they were used to. They also had to help their children, ranging from infants up to teenagers, to adjust to that new lifestyle.

What struck me the most about these women was the fact that they carved out a new life for their families despite the minimal resources. They went beyond surviving and coping. They created what became their new normal. They did such a good job at created a new normal that many of them remained in that location beyond the required time and continued to pave the way for their growing families. Most of them were glad when they were able to go back to their old lives, but admitted that they would miss being there.

So, what is it that helps people to overcome major upheaval and life change that often results from unexpected circumstances? What can you do to create a new normal for your life when you experience unwanted changes?

Two Things That Will Change Your Life

Makeup Your Mind

First, you have to make up your mind to live your life as long as there is breath in your body. No one can live your life for you. You have to want to live your life to the fullest no matter how difficult or messed up things might seem sometimes. Things don’t stay the same. Change is a guaranteed constant throughout life.

Many people checkout when seemingly unbearable situations arise. They checkout mentally, emotionally, and sometimes physically. You have to have your mind made up that, that will not be you. Make a conscious choice and effort to remain alert, sober and deliberate with the way you live. Don’t try to run away, hide, sleep, or drink away the challenges of life. Make up your mind to face them and work through them. You will need to be brave. Being brave doesn’t mean that you are not afraid. It means doing what you have to do in the face of your fears. Perseverance and a strong human spirit will help you to overcome adversity and fear. And, mindful determination is a powerful force to be reckoned with.

Make a Life Plan

After you have made the conscious choice to live your life, remain fully present in your everyday life. Stay awake and practice a greater sense of awareness. Now it is time to make a life plan.  This is one of the best and most life changing things you can ever do for yourself. I learned this from Michael Hyatt and Daniel Harkavy. Their new book, Living Forward: A Proven Plan to Stop Drifting and Get the Life You Want and the tools they provide should be required for everyone.

They point out the fact that a person will spend 5 hours doing research to buy a new car. A bride will spend 39 days planning a wedding that will only be one day. We will sit and plan a trip to the grocery store.We plan for many things. Yet, very few people will sit down and put real effort into planning for their future. We drift about and let life happen to us. This is how so many people end up living really unhappy lives.

Don’t underestimate the power of making a choice and creating a thoughtful plan.

(Image: Creative Commons – CC0 1.0 universal license from http://openclipart.org.it.pdf)

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