Embrace Our New Normal

posted by Andrea | 12/22/2016
Print pageEmail page

new normal

A couple weeks ago, I posted a question on Facebook regarding what topics people would like me to write about.

One request I got over and over again was how to “get back to normal” in terms of getting life and home and family and schedules back to the way they were before a big change (a move, a marriage, a new job, a new baby, a loss, a tragedy, a chronic sickness, a new season of life, etc.)

I get it… change is hard for so many people (myself included). Good change, bad change, happy change, sad change, small change, and especially big change — it’s hard because it’s new and different, and we need to figure out how to work this newness into our current lives.

It would be so much easier (at least in our minds) if we could just figure out how to get back to the way things were before, back to familiar territory, back to what we’re used to.

Unfortunately, based on my own experience, it’s often not possible to truly “get back to normal” — especially after a big change.

Instead, I feel it’s more fitting to focus on EMBRACING A NEW NORMAL versus constantly trying to GET BACK TO NORMAL.

 

This is not necessarily easy to do — in fact, many times, embracing a new normal requires a grieving process. However, I feel it’s mentally easier for me to wipe the slate clean, start fresh, and simply decide to accept the fact that things most likely won’t ever go back to the way were before.

 

I’m certainly not saying we can’t (or shouldn’t) try to mend problems, fix relationships, clean up messes, or recreate fun traditions and events… I’m just saying there comes a point when, for our own well-being, we just need to accept the change and press on with our lives.

Whether it’s donating the last of our baby things, packing up our desk at work, moving to a new city, mourning a broken relationship, entering into a new relationship, donating the clothing we were going to fit into again someday, grieving the loss of a loved one, or finally downsizing after raising a family and living in your dream house for 40 years.

Of course, there are many other small day-to-day “new normals” as well, but I think it’s the big ones that usually catch us off guard and cause us to fixate on “getting back to normal”.

With a little time and a lot of intentional effort, we will continue to find our new normals… until the next big change when we’ll be left floundering once more. 

If you have been waiting and trying to “get back to normal”, I’d encourage you to spend the next few days thinking about what a NEW normal might look like for you. Then make a goal to start working towards that new normal in the New Year.

It’s the perfect time of year to start fresh! 

photo source

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Filed under: Life

 
 

Leave a comment

18 comments

  1. Rachael

    12/25/2016

    We are moving interstate on the 1st. Everything will be new. And our middle child will be starting school along with her older sister. Perfect timing for this article, thanks.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    wow — that’s a lot of changes! Good luck as you (and your family members) make the transitions!

    [Reply]

  2. Mara Yager

    12/23/2016

    Definitely struggling with this concept with out 3rd child having arrived in November. It takes a lot of practice to accept that this is the new way things are going to be but it helps keep expectations so much more realistic!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    oh yes! And as you probably know with newborns, their schedules are constantly changing so it seems “new normals” happen almost weekly!

    [Reply]

  3. Maria

    12/22/2016

    Thank you for writing this. So insightful and eye-opening.

    [Reply]

  4. Jessica

    12/22/2016

    Wonderful, wonderful article! Thank you for writing it. I have spent many years learning this lesson, and am still learning to find the joy in adjusting to a “new normal”. I often tell my kids that they will spend their entire lives learning, changing, growing in many ways. As unsettling, and sometimes painful, as change can be, the growth and character it produces strengthens us. Blessings to you, Andrea! 🙂

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yes, you worded that so well. We are constantly changing (which is both good and frustrating at the same time). I guess we’re always working to find our new normal on some level.

    [Reply]

  5. Adriana

    12/22/2016

    As I write this, I’ve just come off of a tough night with my littlest one. He barely slept and is now finally sleeping well…at 7am. Meanwhile I am wide awake even though I’d rather be sleeping. I sooooo needed to read this post. Definitely brings it into perspective! I’ll be thinking about this a lot today, I’m sure. Thank you!

    http://www.adrianathani.com

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    oh those newborn / infant days (and nights) are so challenging! Hope you get some sleep over the holiday break 🙂

    [Reply]

  6. Chris

    12/22/2016

    After my husband passed away, at my annual check up with my “new” Dr. she asked if I’d had any big changes in my life. I told her about it and she made the comment that it will take me a while to get “back to normal”. I told her I’m trying to find my “new normal”.
    Well, 4 years later I think I’ve found it. I say “think” because there are still times when it’s difficult for me but those times are getting fewer and fewer.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    It takes a while doesn’t. I’m so sorry to hear about your husband, but I’m so glad you’re starting to find that new normal.

    [Reply]

  7. Tammy @ Skipperclan

    12/22/2016

    I thought after 20 years as a military spouse, raising two kids into adulthood, and losing the first of our parents…I thought I’d learned this lesson. Then, in August we learned our young adult daughter has a serious illness and I have truly learned that life is all about today. We must grieve our loss, we must find our own pace through the process, but we must learn to accept that our new normal can be embraced and that new normal can be loved even when it’s hard.

    [Reply]

    Evie Reply:

    Tammy, when you get a minute, search on YouTube for “The Frey Life,” a daily vlog by Peter and Mary Frey, young couple dealing in such a *real but uplifting* way with the wife’s chronic illness.

    All the best to you and your family, and remember to laugh every day!

    Evie

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    on no! I’m so sorry to hear this Tammy. I appreciate your input on this topic, and I love how your last sentence. So true!

    [Reply]

  8. Daniele

    12/22/2016

    Oh goodness…this is exactly what I needed to hear today. Thank you so much for posting.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    You’re welcome Daniele!

    [Reply]

  9. linda m

    12/22/2016

    You have no idea how timely this is for me at the moment. Thank you very much!

    [Reply]

  10. Nellie

    12/22/2016

    This is a truly inspiring post.
    Thank you, Andrea

    [Reply]