On the Other Side

At the back end of last week, I spent a few days helping my Mum move house, and while it was exhausting, it was also a really interesting experience.

I was there to help my Mum pack all of her worldly belongings into boxes and close a chapter of her life. In the run up to the move, she had struggled to organise the chaos that packing naturally causes because she was caught up in the memories associated with each item. When you couple this with the thoughts of sadness about moving out of her home and the apprehension of what her new life in a new home and a new city would entail, it was nothing sort of a recipe for disaster.

Have there been times recently when you’ve found yourself caught up in your emotions?

As soon as I arrived, it was interesting to witness how my appearance automatically changed things. Mum seemed to intrinsically know that everything was going to be okay in a way she couldn’t see before, and her stress levels visibly decreased a notch. I felt extremely grateful to be the one who was able to provide her with that sense of peace.

Fast forward to the following day, which was a full 12 hours of packing boxes and moving furniture, and there were numerous ups and downs for my Mum to deal with. In the middle of all of this, I needed to be the grounded, positive person who could bring a sense of calm in the midst of a storm. As an objective witness to the whole thing, for the first time, I began to get a glimpse of what it must be like to go through life in the laid back way that Alex does. Instead of being the one who was bogged down by emotions, I was able to be the one who could easily see the wood for the trees, as it were.

As I am someone whose anxiety can get the better of them from time-to-time, it was interesting to see just how much my Mum’s emotions were hindering our progress at certain points in the day. So often we let our emotions blindly lead the way and we struggle to pull ourselves back, even just a fraction, in order to look at the situation objectively and find a solution. It was a great lesson for me to learn and observe, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I can remember it when it’s my emotions that are heightened because I’m stressed or anxious about something.

Has there been a time when you’ve helped someone and learnt a valuable lesson about yourself and how you handle situations in the process?

About Vicki Grainger

An organisation coach specialising in regaining control at work. Replace feeling stressed and overwhelmed with a calm and confident can-do attitude.

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