#7 Relo Challenge The NEW Normal

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(c) creativecommonsstockphotos | Dreamstime.com,(c) Mikdam | Dreamstime.com,(c) creativecommonsstockphotos | Dreamstime.com

The New Normal.  What is that?

So many changes & so many differences, normal after relocation can seem unattainable.

Interestingly, our brains are always looking to create normal through  shortcuts. It does this in the background or even unconscious to conserve energy for the next fight or famine.  See The Power of Habit, by Charles Duhigg.

Do you want what comes without choice?

I challenge you to slow down during the first few months to choose not just fall into your new normal.


Defined by BING

CHOOSING YOUR NORMAL

With the clean slate of relocation, ask yourself…Do you want life to be like it was?  …OR is it time to bring in some new and toss some old?

Most times, what we do is not by choice. We do things because of who we know, their values and what they choose.  Whether a friend, parent or authority figure, going along with their choices, interests or values is the easiest path to connections and a daily routine.

Though easy, these activities and people may not support your values and how your family wants to live.

WHAT DO YOU WANT?

→Want to try Yoga?
→How about a more creative workplace?
→Think your kids should try Awanas or Scouting?
→Are you really a minimalist, a gypsy or sailor?
→Would homeschooling for a year allow the whole family a Japanese adventure?
→WHO do you and your family want to be???

Dig down and imagine a life without the shoulds and coulds of the previous place.  Push aside the assumed or real judgement of others and design life.

NO MORE SHEEP ~

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Live here, buy that, do this! All clamoring for your attention ~ media, family, friends and “accepted” rules/norms and then judging any deviation, it’s amazing any of us live outside of the 1.86 children, 1 dog, white picket fence house.

Some choose this.  And you can too…but you don’t have to.

DEFINING OUR VALUES

There are few times in life where we have the empty space to create a life.

Being physically separated from who we know, the culture we know, the rules we use and the traditions and habits we participate in, gives us that empty space.  This is the time sift all that we have been doing.

What is liked and valued?
Name what propels you forward?  And sucks the life out?
When life felt as big and as wonderful as it could be,
Who were we with, what were we doing, who were we blessing?
Types of friends encourages us to be who we are?
What or who told or implied we were not good enough?

It is how we feel about our experiences that help us to verbalizes what we value.

See the NEW Normal worksheet for examples of core values.

DEFINING HOME

Where you sleep at night, what you do and who you are with, that defines home.


Home noun \ˈhōm\ :1. Place of Residence. 2. Social unit formed
by living together. 3. familiar or usual setting.  Merriam Webster


What works for your family?  Who are you?

* A loft downtown with artsy friends, weekly cocktail parties and selling party art.
* A sailboat in the Caribbean with Fluffy and a captain going from island to island giving lectures on organic farming.
* Backpacking with a travel journal, your family and wherever you lay your head every night.
* Two and a half acres in the country where the kids can be raised without big city distractions and taught to hunt.

The point is to personally define home.

How, when, where and with whom

Home is built upon the activities participated in, the supportive people allowed in, and the physical home recharged in.  The structure is ultimately a single cog that supports how you live, not the definition.

THE END GAME ~ Your New Normal

(c) Ilona75 | Dreamstime.com

Now THIS is home!

The Primary GOAL of ReloMoms is to help you create home wherever you land.

By taking time to create and know your normal, it is something that you can take with you and your relocation adventures wherever you go.

Take some time and use the link worksheet to define your new normal:

And ultimately living Your definition of HOME.

Craft your NEW Normal with this week’s worksheet

#7 Relo Challenge The NEW Normal Worksheet

If you have any suggestions to help others please email me at Annette@ReloMoms.com.  Together we live great Relo Lives!!

Annette
A ReloMom currently in the wilds of Texas, working to encourage and inspire others while seeking another adventure.

#6 Relo Challenge What to Do

ESCAPE THE BOXES
unpublished photograph © David Calicchio 200

Relocating, boxes and what to do?  It is time to do something normal, something that is not relocation work.  Life has been on hold for a month or more.  It is time to get life back to living.

THE NORMAL THING

Yoga, running, reading in the park, playing halo, museum lectures, writing group, garden club, Rotary, school volunteer, field trips, sewing, cooking….

What activity makes you feel normal?

Traveling every summer to visit my girlfriend, my first activity would be to stop by Target.  It’s not that I really needed anything.  I visited Target because it somehow grounded me in an unfamiliar place.

That first visit made me a part of where I was.

MEET THE LOCALS

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These familiar activities are a perfect places to meet the locals.  The activity created by a common interest gives you an instant connection.

Whether you are running, volunteering or walking in the park, you will find people to talk to.  Asking them simple questions about the local area will be welcome and as I have stated before, just about everyone likes to be helpful.

Asking locals where they take out of town guests is an excellent question.  This will not only give you destinations but insight into what they find interesting.

And the bonus is that you will have something to talk about when you see them next time.

BE A TOURIST

Being a tourist is pretty easy these day with the internet.  There are a number of blogs, even for the smallest towns written by people just like you.

I visited Pawhuska, Oklahoma recently.  With only 3500 residents, one blogger found 70 things to do and see in this 2 stop light town.

Start exploring for you and your future guests!

Without kids’ sports’ schedules and dinner invitations, NOW is the time to explore the museums, libraries, city events, sports teams, heritage village, parades, state fairs, theme park, and brewery tours.

Learn how to make Indian flat bread, see the first ladies’ dresses or learn to ski.  Beyond putting the dishes away, this new world is your oyster.

Explore like you are trying to convince your mom/sister/friend that this move was the best idea ever!  You will find your footing as well as plenty of things you like.

SEARCHING

The internet makes being a tourist easier than ever.

Every community, city and state spends a ton to entice you to come visit.  Take advantage of their websites as well as what you find with these search ideas:

  • City site, click on the visitor link
  • Chamber of Commerce members
  • City tourism board
  • State tourism board
  • Community Parks and Recreation
  • Library events
  • Local and State Events

Need the personal touch, call the library research staff.  They love a good research project.  Also check in with the chamber of commerce and the local or state visitors centers.

If you have hotel nearby, look in the lobby for their concierge and tourist brochure rack.

THE LOCAL THING

Just about everyone in your new community will have something they love about living there.  A restaurant, a parade or festival, experiencing any of these is part of being a local.

Ask about high school football’s Friday night lights, the annual Christmas parade or the Bluebonnets pictures. Every town, county and/or state has their thing.

Participating in community life is being part of the community.

Other ways to be part of the community:

  • Attend the city council meeting
  • Visit the Saturday farmer’s market
  • See the homecoming parade
  • Attend your HOA Bunco
  • Take swing lessons at the community center
  • Volunteer at the library
  • Be a voting volunteer
  • Join the local Rotary or Lions club

Participating in the community help understand what is going on outside the 4 walls of your new home.  You will make new connections and build that support system.

DO SOMETHING NEW

Yes, another encouragement to do something NEW!

The clean slate of relocation is a unique opportunity.  Take advantage.  If you have moved to hockey country for the first time, go see a game or set you kids up with lessons.

If you’ve wanted to try areal Yoga or learn a new language, make it happen.

Nothing is set.  No schedule requires your attention.

Dream about the what ifs and the want to dos.

The need to dos will take care of themselves.

For more ideas and “What to Do” direction check out the
What to do worksheet!

If you have any suggestions to help others please email me at Annette@ReloMoms.com.  Together we live great Relo Lives!!

Annette
A ReloMom currently in the wilds of Texas, working to encourage and inspire others while seeking another adventure.

#3 Relocation Challenge–Navigating My New Community

Navigating. I use GPS!

Navigating. I use GPS
Free photo 87858161 © creativecommonsstockphotos – Dreamstime.com

Navigating an Abandoned Road
Elderly man drives into Sand Pile
Girl drives down boat path into lake
Limo Driver follows GPS down a flight of stairs
Driving into the ocean and 8 other spectacular fails as GPS turns 25
by Sarah Wolfe Global Post PRI

Knowing HOW to get there is a big deal.
GPS is not the whole answer.

Though some of these stories are funny, not finding the DMV after driving an hour, being late picking up the kids, or ending up in a dangerous part of town is not funny.

To live well in a community, you must know your community’s layout, landmarks and how to get ________(there).

COMMUNITY

A PAPER Map.  To many younger than 40 that might seem unreasonable.  However, a paper map, one you can spread out on your kitchen table, is the first step to understanding where you live.

Starting with a paper map identify the major highways and which part of town they are in.  They could be on the north edge, go northeast to southwest or potentially a loop.  By identifying these and knowing generally where you are in the city, NOW you are never lost.

Next identify the landmarks in your city and put a star or highlight the intersection on your paper map.  Whether they are major, like the St. Louis Arch or what your sister would judge minor the high school or the only stoplight in town, mark it all.

Identify landmarks on all sides of town.  Even If one of them is the only sign of civilization truck stop on the west side mark it.

This layering of information creates a spatial map in your brain engaging the navigational abilities we were all born with.

A MAP IN YOUR BRAIN

https://www.facebook.com/StormMountainCenter/photos/a.400315725123/10153339728925124/?type=3&theaterThis is NOT Mount Rushmore
an actual sign 13 miles from Mount Rushmore
referenced in the May 2016 issue of Time Magazine article How GPS is messing with our minds.

Practically, with a spatial map you:

  1. Know how to get there
  2. Are never truly lost
  3. Do not waste time
  4. KNOW IMMEDIATELY if Siri/Waze/GoogleMaps is sending you the wrong way.

GPS, as good as it is, is flawed.  Waze, as much as I LOVE it above the rest, sends me into some of the worst neighborhood when I am not paying attention.

Like with everything else in life we must take responsibility for where we are.  This is as much for our safety as the safety of those we love.

FUN WITH PRACTICE

We have a bird’s eye view of where we are going.  We know the major landmarks to verify our route along the way.  Now it is time to practice getting there.

We might as well choose something fun as our first destination.

Let’s say you have a passion for Italian Ice, fabric stores or select soccer.  Find the top 3 of your thing and plot them on the map.

  • Look over the directions both on your paper map and GPS.
  • Print out your directions
  • Make your way to your destination without voice directions

Without voice direction you notice the environment around you and increase practical knowledge of the area.  Are these good areas of town?  Would I walk around here?  Is there a brewery or pie shop to explore next time?

Each trip into the community will provide another thread of information that ultimately makes this community, your community.

YOUR SUPER POWER

Becoming a navigational expert in your area is a SuperPower!  Who knew all you needed was a paper map and a little practice

Most locals only venture within a 2 mile radius.

You will find that they will start asking you how to get places.  Being navigational expert people will start asking you, the new kid, how to get there.   All is all, it is an easy and practical way to understand where you live.

Perhaps you can even encourage others to learn about and engage more in their community.

If you have any suggestions to help others please email me at Annette@ReloMoms.com.  Together we live great Relo Lives!!

Annette
A ReloMom currently in the wilds of Texas, working to encourage and inspire others while seeking another adventure.

Top 7 Relocation Challenges

(c) Monkeybusinessimages | Dreamstime.com
(c) Monkeybusinessimages | Dreamstime.com

The same 7 Relocation Challenges, every time.  These will test your resolve and question your decision to accept a relocation ~ at some point.

Knowing and identifying these 7 challenges as they come will prevent the challenges from delaying your progress.  Here you will learn what they are and be able to identify them.

These 7 blogs will further explore and provide tactical solutions.

The 7 Relo Challenges in order of appearance

#1 – Who to Call

Usually taken for granted, the list from (your last city name here) was curated over years of trusted referrals, friends and good experiences.   Upon relocation though, there are no trusted local friends and resources to help you manage the uncountable demands of finding what you need a getting things done….now.

In Who to Call, we will talk about who can help you, identifying new people and tapping into trustworthy community resources.

#2 – Emergency Plans

This is a rather scary one.

Let’s say you have small children and your spouse experiences some episode that require a trip to the hospital.  Who do you leave them with?  Which hospital is trust worth?  Who is part of your insurance anyway?

In Emergency Plan, we will list out the type of events that require an emergency plan and how establish immediate connections and put provide support.

#3 – How to Get There

During unpacking you realize you need _____.  That requires a trip to _____.

It is time to learn the area in more detail from the major highways to finding the best repair shop, perhaps across town.  We will talk about core landmarks, major highways/boulevards and the process by which to efficiently learn the area and not feel lost.

Get on your explorer hat because here we go!

#4 – Support System

Support System follows on the heels of Emergency Plans.  This is the long term solution for matching your values and needs to what to do, who to ask and where to go.

Here we will spend time talking about how to define you values and quickly identify both personal and professional resources.

#5 – Cultural Differences

Everywhere you move is different.  A true cliché.

Even moving across a Metroplex like Dallas Fort Worth can be a seismic culture shift.  Urban city to cowboy country requires a different attitude and rules.  Whether across country and global move we will discuss how to use those values of yours, adapt, and appreciate while still staying who you are.

#6 – What to Do

In the first few weeks, you NEED FUN to off balance all that work!

What do you like to do?  Is it here?  And what else?

Adventuring through your new community and beyond will help you relieve stress and acclimate to where you are now.  In a less obvious way, this will also help you define and refine challenges 1 thru 5.

#7 – The New Normal

Normal life, will it ever happen?  Though it seems impossible in the first few weeks or months, on the other side of this, your predictable daily routine will be established.

Don’t Worry…well, not so much.

We will talk about how you define home and normal life as well as the things you will learn and incorporate as the journey from here to there evolves.  Hang in there.  So many of us has survived this before you.

You can too…can have an amazing journey along the way.

The first one Who to Call is already here.

Please email me at Annette@ReloMoms.com with any questions or thoughts.

Have a wonderful Relo,

Annette
A ReloMom currently in the wilds of Texas, working to encourage and inspire others while seeking another adventure.