After the recession, I wrote about the new norm in the book Upside: How to Zig When Life Zags. Now we are experiencing a new phenomenon associated with the new norm that newspapers are calling the new normal. (Examples: NY Times November 7, 2012 – By MIREYA NAVARRO, November 01, 2012 – By ANDREW C. REVKIN) The words are different but the effect on humans is the same. Individuals are facing more change and upheaval than ever before. There are fewer things we can count on–jobs, security, and now weather possibly associated with climate change.
How do you weather the new storms?
More than ever individuals must remove expectations and learn to be extremely resilient and flexible. Think about that ball on a string as it goes up and down. That is you going through difficult times and then times of stability. The challenge is to find new, different, and creative ways to be happy in spite of the difficult times.
Problem solving using innovative methods is the key to getting through the new normal. Multitasking can be an important skill to use but it is different now–it is being able to juggle emotions and practical actions at the same time. Dealing with loss while picking up your life, your belongings and moving forward.
Count your blessings instead of your losses.
Those blessings may be disguised in small things like a child’s hug or a friend’s message of love. We are still a free nation and people around you care what happens.
As I traveled the world this summer I was often reminded about the many institutions we have to help us during times of crises. There are few countries that have the resources, spirit, and volunteer organizations willing to help out.
The new normal is here to stay. Your willingness to push through and find a life that is meaningful and productive is your challenge. If you have lost a lot or a little, it is an opportunity for you to think over what was and is important and what you might want to do differently.