Adjust Your Load

November 2020 | by jamie beeson

Kerthunk kerthunk boom boom boom kerthunk kerthunk….the rhythmic noise got louder and louder, faster and faster. My washer can only handle so much, and I'm pretty good at testing its limits. Why can't my small washer dream big and shoot for the stars like a commercial washer? It didn't have the capacity for what I intended for it to accomplish the other day. I was overloading it, and it was off-balance, throwing the wash bin into a chaotic and noisy rumbling. I don't give up easily, so I kept going in, resituating and balancing the comforter, and starting the cycle again only to hear the kerthunk song again and again. 

Kind of feels like 2020, doesn't it? We had such big plans for the year, so we stuffed it full of hopes, dreams, commitments, and expectations only to hear and see those get tossed around in a loud, chaotic kerthunk boom bang ending up with an imbalanced dysfunction. For the first half of the year, we kept trying to reposition and reset. We'd move things around in the same low capacity washer of a year and push start again only to get quickly disrupted and thrown off yet again. Then we started to come to grips that maybe our plans, hopes, and expectations for 2020 are misaligned. 2020 just isn't a high capacity year. It can't handle a normal spin of the cycles we used to do. Maybe you've found yourself in what now mode. Or perhaps you are afraid to push start again and feel stuck. Maybe you're feeling intimidated by the kerthunk and boom 2020 is making. 

What do we do with the realization that we can't have what we want, we don't want what we got, and we can't see what's coming? How do we handle the awkward kerthunk of a year and walk out of 2020, not feeling beat up and worn out? 

I don't have all of the answers. That'd be assuming I understand every situation or could even address them in a short article. But, there are several things I've practiced myself and helped clients to do, from adjusting expectations to managing emotions and being intentional with our thoughts. Right now, I'd like to take you on a Hope Hunt, if I could. Since we've had to take some of our hopes out of 2020, maybe this will help put a few new ones back in to bring balance to your spin cycle of a year. 

Think with me of all of the things in our world that change automatically. Seasons, night to day, the growth of a child, nail growth, hair color as we age, the time on the clock. We could sit and list so many things in the big world and right inside our little world that change automatically without our help, without direction, and usually at a certain pace or time. 

Now let's think about all of the things that have changed because of our influence. Your clothes, home décor, where you live, the tires on your car, all of these things changed because of a choice and an action (or many actions repeatedly.) 

And then there are the things that changed for the better that you never thought could change, but they did. My son's 7-year battle with seizures ended after the 7th doctor found a way to fix it through surgery. How about that promotion you didn't see coming or the job opportunity you didn't know existed five years ago? Or that person that came into your life and your life has changed for the better ever since? 

COVID-19 wasn't in our language in 2019, and now it's all up in our face, square in the eyes, in 2020. Our world and our experience changed in what felt like overnight. 

COVID-19 changed things, and things will change again. It will not be what it is now forever. Time will change its presence and its power. We need to give it time. Remembering, seeking, and finding all the ways things have changed helps us know that our spin won't be an imbalanced kerthunk forever. 

What about those things that change because we made a choice and then did something? We can't control or influence everything, but we can control and influence some things. Maybe it's time to unload and reload to the proper capacity. Quit trying to run the same loads you've always run in your pre-2020 washer. Put in some expectations that you have influence over. So you can't travel for the holidays? Take the opportunity to make unforgettable memories at home. You can't plan for and put on that yearly event? Use the extra time to set a goal and make plans to achieve something you've wanted to do but never could. Finding what you can do is one way of getting free from the frustrations of what you can't do. 

Things will change. Truth. 

You can change things—also truth. 

You're not stuck in the kerthunk. 

You've just got to adjust your load. 

Originally printed in the November 2020 issue of Simply Local Magazine

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