What is possible when you reframe?
I woke up this morning to a beautiful white landscape - trees coated in heavy, pure white snow, bunny foot prints visible around the bird feeder, and the sound of big thumps of snow dropping off the roof to the ground.
Gorgeous! This is one of the pleasures of living in Minnesota and I love it.
But wait... the driveway is piled with snow and I can barely see my car. How am I going get to the gym this morning, when the roads aren't plowed? I count on going to the gym to jumpstart my day. Help.
I can feel the itchiness of irritation start to come up in my chest. Missing my regular gym routine is not in my plan.
And, oh no! The internet is out! A tower is down. YIKES - I have a full day of meetings and groups... I can feel the itchiness swirling in my chest.
This is definitely not in my plan! Now what???
I completely forget about the beauty around me and narrow down my focus tight to the barriers that threaten my routine.
And then I remember to use my favorite tool: reframing.
"Yes, true, this was not the plan. But now, what is possible?"
Ah. I exhale. I feel the itchiness receding, I look up and out, I expand my view and see so much more than I could even a minute ago. While nothing has changed, everything has changed.
What do I see now?
Instead of bustling off to the gym, I can sit in the dark, have a second cup of coffee and watch the snow fall; wow, that feels really nice.
I can use the time to get to some things I haven't been able to find time for, like stretching out the sweater I shrunk in the washer last week; I want to wear that sweater again and I'm glad I have the time to work on it. Nice.
I can soften into remembering gratitude for a warm house, a full coffee pot, children who love me, a soft kitty, clients who I care about and look forward to seeing; so many yeses here.
The internet might come right back on, or I can use my phone.... (it came back on within an hour!)
When you are ready to practice reframing, here are a few things to consider...
Why bother? Learning a new habit, like reframing, takes energy and attention. Consider why you would bother putting energy into reframing. What is your motivation?
How can you best remind yourself, in the heat of the moment? Make it tangible so it becomes real. Learning a new habit is never easy... how can you remind yourself to use reframing as a tool, even when you are in the midst of chaos or discomfort?
What might you remember for next time? An important part of embodying a new habit, or utilizing new tools, is to notice how it feels AFTER we do it. How will you use this helpful information to reinforce something that works?
As you practice "reframing" as a compliment to disappointment, chaos, change, or just every day life, notice how it feels.
Actions, aligned with values, support optimal health.