When one moves countries to make a life, one is even more confronted with things in and out of one’s control. I’ve found myself in the past few days focusing on the issue of control, peace with circumstance and as The Serenity Prayer says, the courage to change what I can.
(As a side note, I always thought this prayer was written by St Francis of Assisi – fascinatingly, when looking into it this evening I note that it’s not and the original version by American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr written in the 1930’s has quite a lot of the current mindfulness philosophy in it “Living one day at a time, Enjoying one moment at a time, accepting hardship as a pathway to peace…” )
So, what is out of our control:
- The exchange rate. With a sizeable transaction about to happen, the difference in exchange rate has a significant outcome on our transferred NZ funds. This, is completely out of our control and while we managed to transfer our deposit at the highest rate in the past few months it has since dipped again and is far from what it has been in the past year. Without jobs $$ matter. Fact.
- Speaking of jobs, these too are, in effect, out of our control. With over 150 people applying for the roles that we are, we are setting ourselves up for disappointment in applying. Fact.
- Change. Change is inevitable and with school about to start for Adventure Girl next week, a new language to become familiar with and different routines, the challenge of change is out of our control. This is unchartered territory for us and I’m concerned about the days ahead.
- Timing. I keep on thinking of what we can do with our property – how we’ll stock it and plant it and make it productive and a blessing to others. The thing is, we’re not in it yet so when I come across an amazing “find” I need to sit on my hands and not get ahead of myself. This is HARD.
Ok, so these things are out of our control. It’s fact. These things are beyond our ability. But what can we affect with our day to day decisions?
- How we spend our money. With the fuel prices being so high, not gunning the car up the hill or driving to overtake every other car can significantly decrease our fuel consumption thus make our $$ go further. Simple things like this are important to consider now. Making coffees at home rather than going out. Picnics instead of dinners out etc. All sound principles and ones we need to change more.
- While the job market is competitive, we can still apply for jobs. We are and will continue doing that. We’ve also signed ourselves up for a free 2 week course sponsored by the chamber of commerce about running our own business incase that direction becomes the best choice.
- Choosing. Choosing is our choice. As an example, we thought long and hard about the right school and pre-school to send our kids to. They’re happy and making bedtimes more consistent is also helping (rather difficult when the sun sets at 9:30 and it gets dark after that). Making routines and filling love tanks is also vitally important right now. In essence, thoughtful choices will make things much better in the long run but also choosing and acting in the first place rather than procrastinating is something we have control over.
- Wellfullness. With all the different stressors, I’ve started to prioritise my care routine. I invested in some awesome morning and night skincare products by Antipodes and I’m really enjoy giving myself some “me” time with a cleanse, tone, serum and moisturise twice a day. Additionally, to get back to a healthy weight, Wednesdays have become my “cake day” where I allow myself the joy of cake and I’m trying to keep alcohol to a weekend only thing. Additionally, Mr Incredible is getting out Mtn Biking more and we hope to do this together once the kids are in school before we get jobs.
- Procrastacreation. Yup – it’s a word I’ve made for myself. On days which I feel utterly hopeless, I’ve taken to creating a crochet project. Quick and easy creation to feel somewhat productive and creative amidst my procrastination on things like labelling school uniforms and stressing about kitchen designs.
- Worship. Taking time each day to meditate, worship and talk to my Creator is certainly something I can control and which helps my whole day. It also helps put things in perspective.
So that’s the two lists for tonight. I could add a few more personal ones to the lists above but I’m sure that would be TMI!