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30.11.2020- On Leaning In To Uncertainty

Trying to distil this year into one word is essentially impossible, isn't it? So much so, that we're faced with sixteen words of the year rather than just the standard one. Unprecedented times indeed. 

I think if I were to unpick how to describe 2020 in a nutshell, it would be uncertain. The fabric of the routines which we knew (although didn't necessarily love) so well was torn out from underneath all of us all, and more or less every part of life since March has been an exercise in adaptation. From getting through the almost inevitable disappointment of plans being cancelled or postponed, to waiting on tenterhooks for successive announcements detailing what we are and aren't able to do, it's been a complete rollercoaster- and not the jolly, cheery type which Ronan sang about back in the early 2000s. 

My personal circumstances have changed a lot over the last few months. I've gone through a pretty bleak redundancy consultation and made it out in one piece. Plans which I'd been looking forward to for years have melted away without any affirmative sense of when they might be able to take place. I'm beyond thankful (touch wood) to still have my health, and although at times I've been bored, life in lockdown has afforded me the opportunity to really embrace my inner hermit tendencies, particularly now that winter is here. So yes, it's been a trying time. But I'm conscious that it could have been (and, indeed, could be) so so much worse. 

With that in mind, I've been trying to lean into this period of uncertainty. I've gone from knowing what I'll be doing in three months time to having no idea what I'll be doing in the next three hours. Life in 2020, by default rather than choice, has become more flexible than I can ever remember, and for me the process of realising that I can't control anything about the circumstances which we're all living through together has been a bit of a revelation. So, to some degree, as much as I can sit here and worry about what the next six months might hold, the fact of the matter is that everything at the moment is so unpredictable that even Mystic Meg would struggle to sketch a picture of what things will look like as we head into 2021. 

Being uncertain isn't something which comes naturally at all. Nor does it mean floating through the next few months without any sense of structure at all. What is does mean is being kind to yourself, taking a step back to look at the bigger picture and realising that no amou`nt of stress will change what's going on right now. Rather than worrying about the weeks and months ahead, I've taken things back to basics and focused on that failsafe, simple mantra: 

(Image credit: Sarah Farrell, please do not reproduce without permission.)


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