It’s natural in times of change and uncertainty to want to reach for the next thing. In desperate times we might settle for sensing we are close to what we believe will restore stability. The next job, the house, the person, the path to health….the ‘thing’ that unlocks one aspect of life and enables us to go on and confidently make decisions around everything else. As the world shifts and shakes in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, there is a collective reassessment of personal assets underway. And I don’t just mean tangible and financial ones. We’ve all been forced to look at our lives from new directions, exploring what we can and can’t live without…toilet paper…really? Jokes aside, on some levels we are all disaster survivors now.
We are in an unexpected situation, we certainly weren’t prepared for it, it has definitely changed life as we knew it, and it has forced us to make personal changes we may not have chosen otherwise. While it is certainly not over, as regulations around isolation are easing we can at least now start to process some of the associated shock, loss and grief.
After many years of connecting with people who’ve lost homes through natural disasters, I’ve observed that there are definitely times and circumstances in life when reaching for the next ‘thing’ is just too big an ask.
Some goals can simply not be achieved in one big leap. They require a series of temporary steps much like stepping stones towards the result. Somehow using the ‘stepping stone’ analogy can lighten the journey and maybe even introduce an element of fun. Think about crossing a river via stepping stones. Some will be flat and solid, definitely a good choice. Others are wonky and slippery but can shorten the path. Some may allow you to pivot in a few directions while others lead to only one path across. Once in a while you might slip and get wet..and most likely you will simply laugh it off.
The most important thing to remember is that you are in charge of the journey. You get to chose every step and so long as you are headed towards your goal, a few temporary stops along the way are more than ok.
These are times for treading lightly and making the most of each chosen step…
‘The big question is whether you are going to be able to say
a hearty yes to your adventure.’Joseph Campbell
*The beautiful painting above is by Maria Heaton (@MariasFineArt) inspired by a photo I took at one of my fav spots!