If you’ve ever experienced a sudden crisis or dramatic life change, you know
that universal feeling that often accompanies one. It’s as if you sit on a carousel
that keeps spinning faster and faster though no one manages the controls.
Just when you try to get off,
you realize that holding on for dear life and riding it out
is the safest option. Sometimes, the effort is so exhausting that you merely pray
for it to stop. Deep down, though, you know the moment will come when you
simply have to jump off and face the risk.
I wrote those words more than 10 years ago. If you have ever read my book, you’ll recognize that they come from chapter 13. Now looking back, I even have to laugh that the number of that chapter on life disasters was 13! Never saw that before.
For those of us wading our way through 2020, you might be able to appreciate the above sentiment. When I penned the book, I was coming out of a very difficult time. It was 2008. Maybe you can relate and perhaps you remember that year as well…when it seemed the world fell apart. Mine certainly did.
I eventually got myself together, however, as we all try to do, and leaped off the crazy ride I’d endured for months. I knew it was time to break away from the chaos that dominated that season, get back on my feet, and try to find a way to make my new normal work. Sound eerily familiar these days?
I knew I needed to come up with a plan that would get me moving forward once again. I wasn’t sure how I would accomplish that, and I didn’t have a clue as to where or how to begin. I did know, however, that I couldn’t sit on the couch and drink coffee forever.
Over time, a mindset tool I now refer to as The Grid was forming in my mind and spilling onto the notepads I was keeping. It became a lifesaver and has helped others as well for the last decade. But more on that in the days to come.
Oddly, six years later, the bottom fell out of my life again and a very unexpected life transition hit me hard and fast. I was down for the count, and I definitely was not Phoenix rising, to the dismay of those around me. That time, the recovery took much longer than I care to admit.
Fast forward another six years. Before learning Corona was more than a beer and a town in Southern California, I had other things on my mind and filling my plate.
You see, in January of 2020, my mother fell twice and ended up in the hospital. Within a week they were talking about a move to hospice. I did make that transition for her and in February, I laid her to rest. In March, a tornado came through and my home sustained damage. I was suddenly displaced with my two very large dogs. Once I was able to move back into my house, the COVID hit which left me trying to figure out a plan for my business to survive.
(Sidenote: Are you seeing a pattern here? If the six-year stints are any indication of my life, I plan to disappear in 2026 and reemerge in 2027—hopefully unscathed!)
The Pandemic of 2020 made its debut onto the world stage affecting all of our lives. We all were slammed into the wall of unexpected circumstances, transitions, disappointments…Basically: Life really happened.
This was not usual. And was dramatic. Life itself does tend to be cyclical. Good days, bad days. Good years, bad years…Does this ring true for you?
Perhaps you find yourself thinking, “Ok, I’ve been here before. How did I get back here? I don’t want to be here…I want to be THERE! What am I not getting right?”
That’s the point. It may feel like a labyrinth or maze that keeps bringing you back to the same place— but that’s not the case.
We tend to think it’s our fault. And many times, it just isn’t. The pain and frustration may look and feel the same. But it’s not. Why? Because you and I are different. We have been affected by the changes we have experienced.
Each experience makes you and I richer as a person. And things are, well—different. Life’s lessons have a way of changing our mindset and the way we view the world around us. It causes some relationships to deepen and some to melt away.
It’s true. I am not the person I was in 2008. Nor the one I was in 2014. Sometimes that worries me, to be honest. But other times I realize that I can’t be or stay the same. What I went through each of those seasons changed me in some fashion forever. Kind of like the way COVID-19 changed the world overnight.
So, here we are in a new normal. Trying to navigate these new stormy waters. We can’t go back. These past few months have changed all of us in some way, shape, or form.
On a positive note, hard times can bring about good changes. I know, you’re rolling your eyes. But bear with me.
For one thing, if you weren’t on the front lines, while we sheltered in place, some of us cleaned our homes from top to bottom for the first time in who knows how long. We re-learned how to cook. I even re-introduced myself to my sewing machine and knocked out a project I’d had in the basement since 2015. I tackled home projects I had never gotten around to and I learned a lot about ZOOM.
I went deeper with friendships because our conversations were deeper. And more real.
Basically, as I look back over the three huge unexpected transitions of my life, I came out better, in some areas each time. I say with complete truth, those seasons produced something good that stayed with me as I moved forward.
So, here I am—again. Another transition. Time to reflect, pivot change. And this time, I truly want to come out swinging and make a difference. It’s going to be a journey and won’t necessarily be easy. But I believe it will be good. I’d like to invite you to share this time with me. I’d like to bring you behind the curtain of my life and learn more about you and how things are going in your world. The words we keep hearing these days are: Better together.
So, let’s get started, shall we?
Want to receive Stephanie’s blog to your inbox? Just click here!
To listen to the podcasts, join Stephanie’s private community on Patreon!
And join us on Facebook too!