We all have our own way of doing things, our own internal rule book, if you like, and we don't take too kindly to other people or situations messing that up. Holding on to a set vision in the face of challenging circumstances is, in most cases, a sure path to disappointment, anger, resentment and a variety other negative emotions.
Having taken some days to reflect on the consequences of waking up in a post-Brexit nation last Friday, one thing has been absolutely clear from the outset: this country needs a change. One other thing has been perhaps clearer still: the most necessary change isn't any of the available outcomes of the referendum, but in the way we conduct our political conversation.
Transformation is not about what happens to us but what make of it. Inevitably, we have to decide what we want our lives to be about apart from everything we have known. We need to consider that we have the right to create something with our own hands and our own thoughts. We might have to leave everything, we might need to invent our lives but in any event the first step is to lay claim to ourselves.
Last year was a difficult year for me; I know we all have them, so I hope to help you get through yours. You see all things pass, not necessarily for better or worse, life is a moving journey and either the scenery changes or you change or both. You may have adopted a fixed mindset and feel stuck, but your life is not fixed.
Taking scary challenges in a step-by-step way can be really helpful. I'm a big fan of lists and sticker charts and I find it really helpful to look at a problem and break it down in a way that is gradually achievable but doesn't cause me too much stress along the way. I know if I become too overwhelmed, I'm likely to either give up or keep putting off the next steps until tomorrow.
One month into 2016 and this is the time when New Year's Resolutions might be wobbling. How can we motivate ourselves to make a change? And then to keep making it? It's easy to make resolutions based on an abstract idea of something we'd like to do or be, but harder to remember this in the day to day reality of making a change.
Most of us want to improve something about ourselves, and knocking on the door of 2016, what better time to promise yourself that this new year's resolution will be different? And yet, most of us have been there. Have you ever noticed that the gym is noticeably more crowded in January, and by February, attendance dwindles?