Sometimes an old habit or “survival tool” can help in dealing with stressful situations, such as a holiday meal away from family; however, they are not always perfect.
By Carol Rickard
It has been more than 35 years since I had this old ‘survival tool’ come in to existence.
In case you are not familiar with the term ‘survival tool’—these are the opposite of LifeTOOLS.
They are the things we find ourselves doing to survive the moment, an experience, or a feeling BUT can make more problems in the long term.
I originally had the title of this post “What to Do When Old Habits Show Up Again” and realized as I started to write, I needed to change it.
You see, I have yet to DO something about it!
The one rule I live by: “Live what I teach.” So I couldn’t write about WHAT TO DO when I haven’t done it yet!
So back to the old ‘survival tool’ that showed up…
When I was in college, since I was 2,000 miles away from home, I didn’t get to go back for Thanksgiving.
The first year I went with a roommate to their house and joined in with the 20+ relatives! That felt weird to me—they weren’t my family.
So the next year I decided I wasn’t going to go with anyone.
In order to ‘survive’ that Thanksgiving, I just went on with the day as if it were a regular, normal day.
I even showed up at the laundromat to do my clothes only to find it“Closed for Thanksgiving”.
The survival tool worked!
I got through that Thanksgiving & many more without any meltdowns.
Turns out, this is what happened for me THIS Thanksgiving… I ended up once again ‘going on as if it were just another day.’
I went across the street and had a marvelous dinner with my neighbor!
But there were only 5 of us & even this had the feel like it was just anther time I was over for dinner.
I wasn’t aware this old habit had showed up again until a few days later, when I realized I hadn’t called a couple of my sisters to wish them a Happy Thanksgiving.
My hope in sharing this experience is to show it doesn’t matter how many tools we have or even how healthy we may be…
We are all a work in process!
The key is we keep on learning & growing…
~ To Living Well TODAY! ~
via Esperanza – Hope To Cope
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