Change Is Inevitable, So Expect It!

I am always surprised when individuals are shocked by normal life events. Many people seem to think that they can plan and orchestrate situations or individuals to match their wish lists. But that isn’t reality. Change is inevitable and is often outside our sphere of control!

As we come to the end the year we usually acknowledge and reflect about what has occurred in the past twelve months. At the same time, we face a new year of resolutions and goals never knowing exactly what lies around the corner.

Do not be surprised by what might happen over the next twelve months:

1. Pregnancies are not always planned and even multiple births cannot be predicted at conception. The circumstances that occur during labour and delivery can bring laughter or tears. A new baby in the family affects every single leaf on the family tree – some more than others.

2. Deaths occur on their own terms. We cannot know how or when someone will die and even though we might hope that a life will go one forever – it won’t. Each year my Christmas card list is smaller and I experience the loss of those who were emotionally close.

3. Illness can appear unexpectedly and drastically alter our lives. Even a “heavy cold” can prevent Queen Elizabeth from attending events in which she has participated for decades.

4. Weather can change rapidly. Storms might destroy property, kill dreams or even take lives and the damage leaves both tangible and intangible consequences.

5. Politics is designed as an engine of change and, even if you support the party in power, you might not like the legislation that is passed. If you don’t, no need to worry. It is never long between elections.

6. Economy is affected by events that occur throughout the whole world. We have, for example, recently witnessed a significant downturn in the oil and gas industry because of supply and demand principles at a global level. The negative financial impact has trickled down through institutions to communities and families. But history knows that the economy moves in cycles and an upturn will occur in time.

7. The familiar evaporates. Out health or mobility deteriorates as we age. Businesses we have thought would be there forever will close. Friends move. Technology evolves.

8. Random acts by individuals can result in violence where innocent people are killed or maimed. The nightly news broadcasts tales of gang wars, senseless shootings and terrorist acts. Smattered between are stories of kindness, heroism and generosity.

9. Human fallibility causes each of us at times to say or do inappropriate things that are self-destructive or hurtful to others. But it is never too late to ask forgiveness and make positive change.

10. Values are transformed. When I was younger people would smoke in the house and put the cat out. Now laws require that people smoke outside and keep their cats inside!

We are never disappointed unless we have expectations. Unfortunately, we usually expect that things will stay the same and when they don’t, we are upset. But change is inevitable.

The important thing is not what happens but how we respond to it. Do not merely focus on the negative events as there are so many good things that happen. We can be part of creating as well as enjoying them.

Happy New Year, everyone!

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