Change has been on my mind as it has popped up a few times for me recently where I have had to change because of circumstances out with my control. I think it worth looking at how you react around change as it gives us a good heads up around the changes the menopause brings which we have to deal with. Here are the things that have changed for me in the last few weeks:
Probably the biggest change is my DVD rental provider LoveFilm is closing. I think I have had a DVD monthly subscription for the best part of 15 years. I love movies and it is one of my anchors to relaxing. Even if I did find another rental subscription, it is not a business model that is sustainable with more people now using streaming services. I or I should say my other half is looking into alternatives. What I liked about it was once you have your DVD list set up, it sends out DVD’s; there are no further choices or actions to make. ‘What do you want to watch tonight?’ Is such a loaded question when there is so much choice available to us all at the touch of a button.
Making decisions ahead of time, reducing choices, and leaving mental bandwidth for the important stuff of life!
Yoga on Saturday
My Yoga class alternates teachers every week, so I only go once a fortnight. I struggle to get to an alternative class on the week that I don’t go. However, it turns out that my favourite teacher is now teaching every Saturday so I am back to Yoga every Saturday.
My supermarket has stopped selling their own brand of shortbread. You may be thinking that shortbread is not particularly healthy and that it is probably a good thing! However, a piece of shortbread is under 100 calories and I find very it satisfying mid afternoon! A wee bit keeps me going and I don’t find it moreish. My attitude with food is that it has to be amazing or else why bother! I have been experimenting with various brands trying to find a replacement. (I know it’s a hard life!) Without much success. Do I find something else instead of keep looking?
It rolls around every August. Everyone says this year is busier that last, but we probably say that every year!
The changes the festival makes is the volume of tourists that influx into the city. It brings a wonderful vibe but it is very busy. Nothing happens quickly. There is no such things as grabbing a quick coffee and getting anywhere takes so much longer. The crowds are not fun for introverts like me and I can take the noise, hustle and bustle for a wee while but then I need to find a quiet spot, which is a challenge in itself.
It happens every years and it is a reminder I think to go with the flow a bit more. Build in more time so that it is a bit inconvenient that things take longer but will not make me late. To have patience! We are all tourist at some point in the year and it is lovely when locals are friendly and have time to give directions rather than impatient and grumpy.
Also, to be deliberate and ensure I create some quiet time at some point in the day, even if it’s not my usual quiet spot. And yes it does make me think I’m turning into Sheldon!
- The shortbread is not really about shortbread, it’s about an mid afternoon snack that is satisfying, easy on the calories and a wee bit of a treat.
- The monthly DVD rental is not really about, renting DVD’s online it’s about the ease of creating a list of movies I want to watch and them randomly appearing without me having to choice again on a weekly. It is about reducing mental bandwidth and less decisions to make
- The Edinburgh Festival is not really about the influx of people and busyness of my home city. It is about me taking responsibility for the fact that I am an introvert, HSP and empath and the need to proactively look after my energy in a different way to usual. Doubling down on self-care practices is a priority in August.
- The Yoga class isn’t about practicing Yoga once a week. It is about the fact that I think I should regardless of whether it fits into my diary or not. It is about the mental bandwidth of trying to shoehorn it in, rather than letting it go for a season. One of the reasons for practicing Hatha Yoga is that it reduces stress levels. You can become sensitive to stress during the menopause, taking part in activities that reduce stress becomes an important part of self-care. It’s ironic that going to class can become stressful.
- The Menopause isn’t really about all the hormonal changes that happen at the time. I believe it is about how we look after ourselves (or not!) and how we feel about getting older.
Knowing how we react to other changes in our lives is a good tell for how we take on the changes the menopause brings. For me it is similar to the festivals where I have built up deliberate practices over the years and know what I need to keep my energy levels on an even keel.
How do you deal with the changes the menopause brings?
Can you look back at what has worked in the past and replicate the framework and feeling rather than being attached to a specific thing or event?
- Do you know what you like and why you like it
- A more important question is does what you like also like you
- Can you educate yourself on what you need to know for a smooth transition
- How much mental bandwidth are your changes takin
- Where and how do you renew yourself?
- Do you take ownership and adapt or blame others for it?
How do you deal with the changes the menopause brings? The menopause is one of the few things in life where we have no choice in.
The only choice is how we choose to feel about it!
Samantha Valand is the author of “The Menopause Diaries: A practical guide to healthy eating and exercising in your menopausal years”. You can find out more about her book here.