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Dealing with the Unexpected


A positive covid test in our household this week has suddenly altered our family's plans for Christmas 😞 


Those of you who know me, or have been on The Method course, know that I do love a schedule and advocate planning!  However, there is so much in life we cannot control and even when we think we've made the best laid plans, something can come at us from left field and leave us feeling as if the rug has pulled from under our feet.


So, how can we manage game time adjustments?


1. Acknowledge your feelings; allow yourself to feel all the feels.


The initial reaction of my 11 year old to the news was perfectly understandable, "I hate you, you've ruined Christmas". While this would be unkind & less socially acceptable coming from the mouth of a 42 year old, it doesn't mean you have to deny to yourself that you may feel angry, resentful, sad, disappointed, frustrated. Acknowledge all your feelings with acceptance and curiosity. (Just perhaps don't say them all aloud to the poorly person! My son did get over his initial anger and disappointment btw).


2. Pause. Take a moment.


Before you respond, take a little time. There is a huge difference between a response and reaction.  When we react in the heat of the moment or in the midst of strong emotions,  we sometimes regret it and feel we weren't thinking clearly. Have you ever done that? I expect you have. I know I have. Whatever this unexpected thing is that life has just thrown at you, usually,  not always, but usually it won't require a split second decision from you about something.  Usually you can afford to allow yourself time to pause, consider and think and you'll probably find as a result you make a better decision; a decision you're happier with.


3. Look for positives.


Now, I don't mean stick on a forced smile and pretend you feel fine about this when you don't. Remember 1 on this list; acknowledge all the feels. However, when you start having to look beyond this unexpected happening itself, your next thought is likely to be "so, what now?"  What's your contingency plan going to be? Acknowledge that unexpected situations we don't want or ask for, often have the potential to open the door to new events in our lives that we can and do enjoy. It may not have been your first choice, but that doesn't mean it's all bad. It may not have been your first plan, but it could still turn into a great plan! Work on making your new, unexpected situation the best you can possibly make it. If you find ways to inject some fun and joy; do it!


4. Build a solid foundation of inner strength.


It's good advice to 'train for the trial you're not yet in'. It's harder to build your foundations while you're mid-trial. It's great if you can put things in place in your day to day life so that when adversity comes, as it will to each of us in some way, shape or form, you already have solid foundations of inner strength to respond to it. Different people do this in many different ways; meditation, faith, prayer, a great sleep routine, eating healthily, fostering solid relationships, these are all ways to train for the trials you're not yet in and build a solid foundation of inner strength and fortitude.


So, for us this Christmas,  one set of lovingly made and happily anticipated plans has had to be delayed, rescheduled. Instead, bring on a cosy & blessed Christmas at home with movies, board games, home made cake, ginger cookies, and we'll plan a fantastic family get together in the New Year!


God Bless,

Merry Christmas,

With Love,

Ellen  x 

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