Hi there again, fellow Seekers!
I was talking to Julia and Mai-Liis on “The Monday Morning Motivation” show, about how best to cope within these changing times.
This year Thanksgiving holiday traditions took a backseat to safety, leaving us feeling loss and sorrow for those cherished opportunities to connect with extended family and friends. These losses are profound and very real. For many of us, regardless of which culture we live in and what we name those holidays, they mark the passing of time, the seasons and the years, and give us the memories with which we find meaning in our lives. Without them we may feel cut adrift, ungrounded, not sure of which way the wind is blowing, or how to sail our ship.
So how do we cope? Well, fact is, if you’ve been on this planet longer than half an hour you’ve developed coping strategies for dealing with the stuff life throws your way! As humans we have a marvelous ability to adapt. Everyone has a “toolkit” of ways to cope with stress and uncertainty. Some examples are: exercising, eating chocolate, sleeping a lot, sleeping a little, smoking, drinking alcohol, meditating, yoga, talking with a friend, talking with a spiritual advisor or counselor, listening to music, playing with a pet, walking in nature, gardening, dancing, arguing with your partner, having a family games night, etc. etc. In fact, there are almost as many different coping mechanisms as there are different people!
Many of us adopted the coping mechanisms our parents used the same way we adopted their values: unconsciously and without really thinking about it. This is why, for example, you’re much likely to be a smoker if your parent was a smoker. The same is true for alcohol consumption and exercising. Like many things, your parents are the first source of tools for your coping toolkit. And since we’re little, we just adopt these tools automatically, without thinking.
Regardless of where you learned your coping tools, at some point you may find that they’ve become outdated, are no longer useful, or simply not working for you in your current situation. Good news! Change is possible. You can up your coping game at any time by learning new tools, and possibly discarding those that don’t work for you anymore. In the coming months as winter approaches, our holiday traditions continue to change and we face the unknown together, I’ll be writing about this more. Just remember to get the help and support you need to make those changes. You’re worth it! Happy sailing!
I invite you to submit your health-related questions (physical, emotional, psychological or spiritual health) to me at: [email protected] No need to include your name; all published questions will be anonymous. I’d love to hear from you!
Note from the Seeker: Christine joins us once a month on our “The Monday Morning Motivation” show at 10 am on The Seeker Facebook Page.