5 Steps to Help You Creatively Navigate the New/Next Normal

Dear Freedom Achiever,

Do you refer to these times as the “New” or the “Next” Normal? What it really is, is constant and rapid change!  The world is changing and so are we – on multiple levels! So much of what we have become accustomed to as the norm in our everyday lives has suddenly shifted and some people find themselves struggling to find ways to hold on to what we know and love, whilst others are embracing the New/Next Normal. How do you feel?

McKinsey coined the term “The Next Normal” based on the assumption that there are two periods: pre-viral COVID-19 era and post-viral new normal. As we enter the next normal, digital transformation will be one of many factors that determine an organisation’s ability to survive. In addition to emphasis on digital strategy, this next normal will require a different set of skills in our professional lives. According to the World Economic Forum’s 2020 The Future of Jobs Report, the top skills rising in prominence over the next five years include critical thinking and analysis, problem-solving, and skills in self-management such as active learning, resilience, stress tolerance and flexibility.

As I sat and thought about all the changes that we are navigating on a global scale, the Kubler-Ross Change Curve came to mind. Her model was about the grieving process. So why does this model come to mind ? Because it explores the range of emotions that we typically go through when experiencing change/loss. There are a range of emotions we go through, but it is only when we get to acceptance, that we can truly move forward.

Going through the change is not a linear process – after all, each one of us deals with situations differently. We may occulate – shock, anger, depression, bak to anger, blame, etc etc until we hopefully reach acceptance. When we allow ourselves to accept the situation, we see the situation for what it truly is and can now brainstorm ideas to solve the problems you are facing.


"Acceptance is not about liking a situation. It is about acknowledging all that has been lost and learning to live with that loss.”

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and David Kessler Tweet


 Acceptance allows us to let go of what was. At this stage, we are able to support ourselves and are better equipped to help the people around us in moving forward.

Let us explore five tips to help you navigate the changes you are currently facing so you can lean into acceptance.

1. Have an Attitude of Gratitude

"Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”
— Eckhart Tolle

GRATITUDE on red background

There are various studies about the impacts of practicing gratitude which show that people who journal their gratitude daily are more likely to feel happy and satisfied with their lives, as well as less stressed out.

When it comes to feelings around the pandemic, the focus can go towards all the things that have been taken away. However, developing an attitude of gratitude is the perfect way to recognise what you do have in life rather than focusing on what is lacking. That shift in your energy creates space for you to creatively navigate these changes, keeping in mind all that you have available to you to keep you grounded during these times of change.

What is it that you already have in your life that you are grateful for today? Having that as something to hold onto can become your rock in this changing environment.

Some examples of this from our community are having more time to spend with family and being able to be there with your children because you usually spend more time away from home due to work.

2. Take Care of Yourself

"People often say motivation doesn’t last. Neither does bathing—that’s why we recommend it daily.”
— Zig Ziglar

How much time do you dedicate to taking care of yourself in your day? In times such as these, when navigating changes, a daily commitment to the things that you say we want to do for ourselves will go a long way. There are so many ways that you can take care of yourself, and these are just a few things you could implement into your self-care routine:

  • Move your body: Our bodies are designed to move, and with this move to working from home we are moving a lot less.
  • Build your inner strength: This can look like prayer and meditation. Take that time to go inwards to really centre yourself with all the things going on in your life.
  • Fill yourself from your source: What do you consider to be your purpose? What is your ‘why’? This can really help you to ground yourself in times of constant change and upheaval.
  • Monitor your thoughts and language: Be aware of the quality of conversations you have with yourself. How are you empowering yourself through your self-talk so you can creatively navigate the changes you are facing?
  • Manage what you consume: What are the messages you engage with regularly via the news and social media? How are these thoughts and comments serving you?
Relaxed african sportsman stretching exercise

3. Focus on What You Can Control

How can you shift your energy from a constant loop of worry? With all of the things going on in your mind at any given moment, you have to make sure that you take control of where you choose to focus your energy via your thoughts. Claire Newton’s adaptation of Stephen Covey’s “Circle of Concern”, is a great tool to use to help you to shift your energy away from anything that is outside of your control.

If you find yourself fixating on when this current situation will come to an end, it is just one example of one of the many things happening in your environment that you do not have the answers to put your mind at ease. It may be a concern, but what can you influence in this scenario?

A few things you can influence may include:

  • who you spend time with
  • what you give your attention to
  • how you take care of yourself

Remember, it is perfectly fine to have an awareness of the things you cannot control but by focusing your energy on what you can influence and control during this time, you allow yourself to come up with creative ways to problem solve.

4. Build your resilience

"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
― Martin Luther King Jr.

Here is a question for you: Why do you think you succeed? Do you succeed because of your abilities or because of your efforts? If you believe your success is based on ability then you have an expert mindset, but if you believe it is based on effort then you have what is known as a learner mindset.

In times of change, having an expert or fixed mindset can lead to frustration, as with this mindset there is a tendency to want to control.. Adopting a learner or growth mindset helps you be open to change and willing to learn from the experience.

Your life is as good as your mindset

5. Visualise the future you want

"Start with the end in mind. If you don't know where you are going, you can't really plan the most effective route to get there!!"
― Stephen Covey

African American Girl Writing Notes On Glass Visualisation Board Indoor

Where do you want to take your life? Even though right now some of your plans for yourself have come to a screeching halt, having your sights set on that overarching vision for your life is an effective tool to keep you moving forward. Why? It gives you something to look forward to.

Creating a vision board can assist you with this. This is a helpful step of creating visuals of what you want to see and experience in your life. Vision boarding moves you out of wishful thinking and into active creation mode.

Hopefully, these five tips can assist you as we navigate these changing times.

Live YOUR Passion!

Georgina Terry FCCA PMP, Passions to Profitability Expert
Georgina Terry FCCA PMP, Passions to Profitability Expert
My mission is to help you live YOUR Passion by providing you with the tools you need to live your life by desire and design, and NOT by default, so you can achieve your version of freedom!

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