I had an interesting conversation today with my son that ended up with him reminding me that the essential difference between humans and the animal kingdom is our ability to problem solve. It is funny how such a simple statement can set you back on your behind to think ‘huh – he is right'.
This line of thought led me to consider how when faced with adversity in our lives it's easy to get caught up with what has happened and overthinking how you ended up there in the first place. Somehow without realising it hubby and I got sucked into limitation thinking. We can't seem to be able to disassociate ourselves from the reality that yes we have experienced adversity, and the most prolonged and crippling event for us is financial loss and how it has coloured every moment going forward.
Yes, here is the moment where you say – count your blessings, and we do, but the inescapable fact remains, how do you come back from a lesser financial position now than when you were in your twenties? That takes some adjusting to, let me tell you.
My experience tells me its harder for the men to cope with this new reality than it is for women and the reasons are varied. Belonging to the 'sandwich generation' as a man has not helped at all.
I believe we need to be open to the ability to evolve, learn something new and I do believe that women can embrace that easier than men. The hard part is gaining acceptance of where you are at and making a conscious decision to move forward. You almost have to look at yourself in a third person point of view because we are so blinded by the ‘now’. A key component is to be a little selfish and ask what do I need to do to move forward based solely on your own needs, not anyone else’s. The world will want a little piece of us every day but how do we truly know what we want to then make a decision on what we can compromise on or not? Here I think women have ingrained guilt when thinking solely about ourselves and that is our struggle. For years I put myself low on the priority list, but it hasn't done me any favours. My favourite analogy is ‘fitting your oxygen mask first before you can help others'.
Here we circle again to problem-solving, moving into the future we should be taking an honest evaluation of ourselves and use the brain that was uniquely given to us to solve for happiness, one step at a time.
Aquaplaning over life without thinking too profoundly is just another way to bury your head in the sand. I genuinely believe that when one door closes, a window is sure to open, but are we looking?