by Nancy Mikkelsen

November 15, 2021

Don't Worry About a Thing!

 

Rise up this morning, smiled with the rising sun

Three little birds pitch by my doorstep

Singing sweet songs of melodies pure and true

Saying, “This is my message to you”

-Three Little Birds, Bob Marley

 

Sometimes we need to remember the words of this song. As we slide into the madness of holiday celebrations, it is important to remember that we are not the same as we have been in the past. You have changed along with everyone else. Your reptilian brain may be in charge whether you want it to be or not.

 

Perhaps in 2020, you did Zoom holidays as many families did to remain safe. In 2021, there may be more expectations for face-to-face gatherings (just like pre-COVID), which may be causing anxiety because it will not be the same. Just like going back to the office after the crisis, going back to family after the crisis can be a bridge too far.

 

  • Are we supposed to hug Cousin Joe? Elbow bump Aunt Sally?
  • Can we stay inside without masks?
  • What will be the protocol for sharing meals? 

 

No single response seems correct yet we would like it to be ONE way so we KNOW what to expect.

 

What can we do?

 

  • Give yourself PERMISSION to be anxious. It is normal and ok.
  • Realize that others are feeling similarly but NOT THE SAME. Be kind, gracious, and listen with curiosity.
  • Remember this equation: E(vent) + R(eaction)=O(utcome). You can only control your reaction but that can create different outcomes.

 

And lastly, remember what Bob said so poignantly in Three Little Birds

 

Singin’:

“Don’t worry about a thing, worry about a thing, oh!
  Every little thing gonna be all right. Don’t worry!”

 

Nancy Mikkelsen

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