How to transition gently into the normal, but not so normal
About twelve years ago I took the rite of passage that many young Aussies do and I went on a big overseas trip. In preparation to leave, several people warned of the potential culture shock that I might experience. They spoke of intense heat, different languages and unfamiliar currencies. I listened and took note of their advice. As it turned out, the place I got the greatest culture shock was the one that was the most similar to home. When I lived in Canada, I often felt disoriented because it felt familiar yet things weren’t quite the same.
As the world now reopens, the energy of moving towards normal but-not-quite-in-the-way-we’re-used-to is swirling about and gosh it’s similar to the feeling I had in Canada. It was as though I knew what to do and how to act, but that I had to concentrate a lot on doing it. Small changes in our everyday can sometimes throw us off kilter more than the big ones.
Because so many micro adjustments are required right now, there’s been a sense of tiredness and uneasiness in the air as this evolution occurs. To better prepare for the same, but not the same world we’re transitioning back into, here’s some ideas to keep in mind.
Despite any urges to fly out of the house, see all your friends, go back to the office and end the day in a swanky bar, it might be best to take it slowly. Our minds and bodies have adjusted to seeing only a handful of people so all of a sudden flooding our diaries with activities might negatively impact our energy levels. In short, take your reintegration into socialising, family events and work gently.
Get lots of fresh air and sunshine
There’s nothing quite like nature to reinvigorate the spirit. If you’ve already been going for extra walks and getting some sun on your skin, keep it up. If you haven’t, now’s the time to start. The fresh air and vitamin D is an excellent combination to boost mood and lift your energy levels. Both of which are vital for navigating change.
If it feels good, think big
For the last couple of months, it’s been safest and smartest for lots of us to make decisions based on the information of day. While this has helped many be more aware of the present moment, there’s now space for us to entertain the idea of thinking big again. Creativity has risen to the surface so let’s use it. If it’s starting to feel okay or even good to think about the future, you might like to:
Create a vision board
Mind map business ideas
Journal where you’d like to be and what you’d like to be doing in two years time
Make a plan
When we have structure it helps us to feel more stable and focused. To help the transition process, you might like to:
Identify the most important areas of your life such as career, family or health
List down what activities and substeps will help to prioritise those areas
Pop it all in your diary
Ground your energy
Every day connect to the ground beneath you in some way. This might be taking your shoes off in the backyard, sitting on the grass or walking along the beach. ‘Earthing’ or ‘grounding’ has the incredible ability to calm our nervous system and reorient our mind.
Continue healthy habits from isolation
Reflect on what has been working for you throughout isolation and seek to continue it. For so many, the happy healthy habits that blossomed during isolation relate to rest, connection and simplicity. For me, going for a walk in the middle of the work day has been really great. As a result, I’m going to consciously focus on continuing that behaviour.