My Life Positive thoughts Self Management

When Life suddenly changes…

Picture taken by Atle Hetler, during a PANA meeting in Islamabad.

 Suddenly, our whole world changes, and we are left to fend for ourselves. You know and I know. It happens. Yes, it could be the loss of a loved one, or a complete change of scene like marriage. It could be that you found out you have a big illness. Or you migrated to another country. Whatever!

When it happens, it is a complete summersault of one’s life. It keeps changing into new ways of doing things. Being in this new world, you keep falling short of your own expectations. There are many goof ups as you try to do things in another way.  It is as if you are keeping on growing older, wiser and then ending up … stupid again!

Yes, stupid.

I mean, when nothing is working the way you want it to. You are at a loss for what to do next. Specially, where do you fit? That is when you’ve got to get a grip on yourself. Or you may lose yourself in this process. Some people actually give up at such times. When, this is the time to get up and get restarted.

You need to accept that such things do happen. We all have faced it at one time or another. Only, thankfully we all do not go through it at the same time. So, you feel alone.

So, when life changes, we are shoved out of our comfort zone. We then struggle, trying to resettle ourselves into a new bewildering world. Learning new rules to make things work. (Yes, in this new world, our old rules don’t seem to be effective enough.)

How to regain control?

The big question is how to regain one’s control of one’s life? How to call it one’s own life, once again?  I mean, instead of getting swept away, one wants to get one’s equilibrium back. So, what to do?

Make a fresh routine:

Find things to do, to bring the balance back in life. Try to bring in those elements back from your old life, which you loved: music, food, clothes, and specially those routines of daily living which you loved. So, what is stopping you from bringing them back ?

In my case, my morning shower first thing in the morning is essential. Getting up and getting nicely dressed makes me feel great, along with a good breakfast. It has to be on time. Otherwise, the day doesn’t start right.

When my husband passed away, my daughter and I were in the middle of the biggest battle of our lives. The entire day would be spent with the laborers who were working at our home. We needed to be there to supervise and address the usual issues that happen with construction work. Then, there would be the visitors for condolences, and the trips to courts. So, the day had its challenges. (Besides the MBA that I was doing and the publication of my book in USA.)

By the end of the day we were quite drained and burnt out. However, we made sure we went out for our usual drive, which was a part of our previous lives that we loved. Going to have barbecued foods at our favorite haunts, felt scary and weird at first. We had never gone there without my husband. But we made sure we went. I was in iddat,  for which I had put on a hijab. Which was all I could do for it, (besides my praying and sadqa.)  The option of sitting around at home and grieving was definitely out! (Due to some wolves prowling around!)

So, I had to make do with keeping my sanity within the new scenario. So, my dear, ‘do what it takes, to keep your sanity, at all costs.’

Spirituality and exercise:

Praying, or spiritual routines, like meditation or exercise are also the other stuff that makes life get back to ‘normal’. You know it can’t be the same ever again. But you also know, it can be as close to that old life as possible. Unless you don’t want it.

Is this life better?

That too is a possibility. Perhaps this new life is even more attractive to you than the previous one was. In that case, sky is the limit. Yet, you’ve got to be careful and play it with great care. Be attentive and mindful. You never know, things can get topsy turvy too. In a new environment, you know, anything is possible. You’ve got to know what is good for you and what isn’t. What works, and what doesn’t.

It is a good idea to keep a daily diary for brief notes, so that within a couple of months you can relate what is happening in your new life.

It is fascinating, actually

Let me give you can example with which I’m sure you cannot relate. But I certainly can. What with the marriage of my youngest daughter. Suddenly, there is a void in my life. That happens with every change. It happens because one tends to do things the same way as in the old life, so there are parts which no longer make sense.

So, either you sit and mope, or you build a beautiful castle in those parts of your life; For instance, I had this habit of family time in evenings. Now I still have it with my mother. Once she leaves for her room, I have new choices. Either I have video chats with my girls every evening, or with my friends. Otherwise, I go off for a drive or for visiting friends. Mostly, I’ll go out. What do you do in your ‘void’ moments?

Trust God:

All the time your life was changing, God was working out something else for you. Suddenly, I found this new friend in my life, who is just what the doctor ordered. She recently moved into our neighborhood, and we clicked. Actually! The way we have naturally fitted into each other’s live, is amazing. Allah has a certain someone waiting to enter into your life. Just as He makes some persons exit from your life, He has other persons all set to make an entry into it at the precisely ‘right’ moment.

 Exactly the person you needed.

Open your mind:

Be ready. Keep your eyes and mind open. Yet, remain calm and no need to jump around too much. Let things ‘happen’.

Give away the old:

Remember, this life will need you to throw  give away many things that no longer belong in your new life; Such as outdated CDs, books, clothes, linen, carpets and even decoration pieces. Just give away or sell them, if you are good at it. Make space for your new life. How can anything nice happen, when you are already ‘full’. Yes, full of your ‘memories’, and the rubble of things that are only coming in the way.

Leave your regrets and baggage with it:

Stop living in your past. Just thank Allah for the good memories, and feel happy that the bad parts of your past are also no longer there. It is over now. Remove all that baggage from your life along with your clothes etc. Take old pictures which only give you pain and burn them or throw these into the sea or lake. Good riddance! Make a ceremony of removing the ugly parts in your past, if it makes you happy! ?

 Redo your home and life:

Why not update and upgrade the systems in your home? Make some changes that you had never done before. Do what you always wanted but never did. Pamper yourself, and also indulge yourself. Most importantly, stop moaning and groaning and talking about the painful parts in your life. Stop it.

Be happy, think happy:

Talk about happy things, in your past, and bring happy activities into your life.

Stay blessed! ?

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