On the tennis court a few weeks ago, my friend Kate mentioned that in January she predicted the word "adaptability" would become the word of the year. She called that right!
So, I asked Kate, who when she's not acing me with her serves, is a Behavioural Health Counselor at Tucker Health in Singapore, for some tips on adapting to the new normal. Kate says, "Tune in to your own thinking. Not everything has to be a black and white thought. Just because you think something has to be a certain way, doesn’t make it so. Ask yourself why something must be that way." For example, if your morning rule is: I must be at the gym by 9 am, and you cannot go to the gym because it’s closed, you may be feeling frustrated, angry, disappointed, or uncomfortable. Why is this? Are you missing the workout? The socialization? The routine? STOP, take a moment and observe your own thinking. Stop, pause Take a breath Observe your own thinking Process and/or Problem solve Pause those black and white thoughts and try looking at the situation through a different coloured lens. Think to yourself, “I like to go to the gym because it is an anchor for my day. I get a sense of accomplishment because I started my day with exercise.” Now ask, “how do I change my routine and accomplish this in a different way?” Can you try something new? Can you develop a new skill set? For instance, if you run or swim or play tennis can try an online yoga class? Can you do Zumba in front of your screen? Could you anchor your day with a cup of coffee on the balcony instead? You may not love every new activity but think about how you can adapt and try to find a way to move forward positively.