I looked at my calendar today and realized it is nearly December, and I am shocked.
When covid first hit our country I pulled on my inner strength. I tend to meet challenges with action. It is my fight response. I can do this. It is just for 14 days. I can spin this plate. I GOT this.
Until I didn’t. 2020 has been throwing plates at us all year. Spin. Another plate. Spin. Another plate. Spin.
So, I gathered up my strength gathered up my courage and I did . . . nothing. Absolutely NOTHING.
I wanted to be encouraging. I wanted to be positive. I wanted to be stronger than everything. Instead, I found myself paralyzed. Instead, I found myself not moving forward, not accomplishing goals, just waiting, waiting, and waiting for something to change. I just stopped and held my breath.
I’ve been holding it ever since.
Anyone who’s ever done battle with a toddler knows you can’t hold your breath forever. Regardless of what your mind is telling you, regardless of your strength of will, your body will force you to breathe.
Deep breath. Perhaps doing nothing was the perfect path for me at this time to move forward.
Flight. Fight. Freeze.
Our survival responses are rooted in our biology. Our body takes over to keep us safe in immediate crisis.
Flight allows you to escape and avoid the attack. For now. Unless the challenge is temporal, you may have to face the challenge another day. It hasn’t been eliminated but avoided.
Fight faces the challenge aggressively and head-on. It confronts the issue with action. But, you may not make the right response. Without thought and insight, you may conquer the challenge, or you may have an unintended outcome that is not desirable.
Freeze. When you freeze you stop. This response is dangerous if you are in front of an oncoming saber-toothed tiger attack (but so is running from a tiger LOL), but freeze gives you the opportunity to take stock of the situation. You are able to really look at what’s going on. That delayed reaction means that you can make an appropriate response.
Do you remember that scene from the movie Tortilla Soup? You know the one – when Leticia tosses the dinner plates on the floor and releases all of her pent up anger and frustration? Yea, that.
Drop the plates.
Part of the reason for paralysis and the stress of this time is that so much is outside of my (our) control. I have to admit that I have a strong need for control. It brings me comfort.
So I’ve been spinning these plates, but they aren’t all mine to spin. I can’t control the covid crisis, the economy, climate change, and political divisiveness. I can only control my response to these things.
you can control.
Let the rest go.
Holding in place has allowed me to evaluate my household and my business and decide how to act within this climate so that my family is safe and healthy. Stepping back has given me perspective and purpose for the new year coming. Being still has helped me decide where to spend my time and effort.
Can you hear the sound of plates crashing right now? I’m dropping the plates with gusto, walking through the shards, and headed toward 2021 like a boss.