What We Can Control

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[I wrote this for yesterday’s Love Note and had an inkling that it deserved a spot on the blog, too]

It’s a tricky time. After three years of online classes and planning to attend the final pieces of a Veterinary Social Work certificate program at the University of Tennessee next week, it was just canceled. Yep, poof!

And yet it’s going to be okay. Although I’ve lost a lot on non-refundable travel expenses, I’ve also gained nine days back. The conference will be rescheduled, I’ll get my certificate at some point, and I’ll make my way to Knoxville when the time is right.

This virus has thrown a wrench into so many people’s lives. Not just the physical effects of the virus, but all the changes in day-to-day functioning. Yes, I’m washing my hands more than usual, noticing an uptick in anxiety in the air, and handling numerous scheduling fall-outs, but otherwise it’s life as usual. Just on a much smaller, localized scale.

As avid planners (I think you know who I’m talking to . . . yes, YOU), the unknown takes a toll. Should I go visit family? Should I work from home? Should I go to this small gathering? Should I plan my upcoming birthday trip? Should I use public transportation? Should I stock up on bath tissue? The questions go on and on.

And the challenging thing for us planners is that it’s all out of our hands.

I try to remind clients (and myself) that the only thing we have control over is the way we react to things. That’s it. And, let’s be honest, that’s really hard most of the time.

Deep breaths help. Practicing STOP helps (Stop, Take a Breath, Observe What’s Happening, Proceed with Awareness). Surrendering expectations helps. Knowing there will be unexpected schedule shifts and inconvenience helps. Practicing acceptance helps.

Let’s navigate this time with gentleness. There’s no one to blame, we’re doing the best we can, and we’ll get through this. Promise. Bisous. x