Monday, October 29, 2012

When Life as You Have Known It Ends

Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what people fear most. --Dostoevsky

Death, divorce, a Great Depression or Recession, new management, job loss or any other situation where life as we knew it ends: all of these are radical changes that require that we take “a new step” and “utter a new word.” As we can never be fully prepared for what is new, we have to adjust ourselves … and every adjustment is a challenge to our faith, our self-respect, and our confidence.
Whether it is an individual, a family, a community, an organization, a business or a nation, how we begin processing The Adjustment -- how we take those first steps and begin uttering those first new words – is what shapes our future. If we seek to make the necessary adjustments from a place of faith, as well as confidence that we possess the capacity for learning new things and taking on new responsibilities, we will go in one direction. If we give in to fear and despair, we will go in another direction.
The first step in the process of adjusting is seeing what I see and knowing what I know. Denial leads to delusion. Evasion is foolish and only delays the inevitable. Giving into fear keeps us from accessing the resources that lie within us for making the necessary adjustments. Declaring war on circumstances that cannot be changed is an exercise in futility. (“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; 
courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.”) The only healthy way through this process is a mindset that says, “It is what it is: now what?”

Seeing what I see and knowing what I know …

What new steps must I take?

What new words must I learn?

What are the opportunities for personal growth?

What resources are available to me (internally and externally) that will help me make the needed adjustments?

How do I strengthen my self-confidence?

Where might there be even a glimmer of hope for my future, so that I can manage my fears and insecurities and keep walking forward?  

Copyright, Monte E Wilson, 2012

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