“All shall be well, and all
shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.” Julian of Norwich
this post in an airport coffee shop. It
appears here somewhat later than planned.
The poor quality of the internet connection, as well as being surprising
considering I was in a state capital associated purely with business and
political travel, conspired to stop me posting at the time of writing. I was on
my way to a weekend away involving a motel with the word ‘Value’ in its
name. That’s right: not Downtown Quality
Inn, nor Downtown Premier Inn, nor Downtown Luxury Inn, but Downtown Value
Inn. Wifi wasn’t great there either
(although to be fair, the hotel far exceeded my expectations). Since then life and jetlag has got in the
way, but back to the weekly blog post routine now.
9th July 2015 (yesterday evening as I write), I was almost two weeks
into a three week trip to California.
Part work, part holiday, it has been a logistical planning mission
involving numerous beds and even more journeys of one form or another. Last night I was following up some details
for Friday’s adventure and opened up my purse to discover that my credit card
was not in its usual slot. I checked
other slots. I emptied the purse
out. I emptied my bag out. I told myself to not panic and rechecked
everything I had just checked.
Definitely no credit card.
hours since, I’ve tried to figure out where it has gone. I don’t think it’s been stolen, more likely
simply left somewhere random in the confusion of travel. It doesn’t really matter what happened to
it. This story is about what I did next.
I somehow did
not panic. I checked my online bank
account and no unexpected transactions were listed. Whilst online, I got up the number to ring to
report it missing. I rang the
number. I had the foresight to explain I
was ringing from abroad, with limited phone credit, and gave my number for a
return call in case of getting cut off.
After cancelling my card, I calmly asked my Air BnB hosts about the
nearest cashpoint and they kindly took me there so I could get extra cash.
I then spent the rest of the evening on their sofa merrily chatting with
them. I laughed and joked and completely
forgot that I was no longer in possession of my credit card. My back-up, my safety net, was gone – yet
here I was continuing as if everything was okay.
friends, is because everything is okay. Admittedly
the tiredness gremlins got me when I went to bed and I then couldn’t get to sleep
because anxiety took over. Even this
morning there was a knot in the pit of my stomach as I felt a bit worried about
financial precariousness. But then I
went about my day as planned and the fear subsided again. Now it’s late afternoon and I feel confident
to again state that everything is okay.
is okay because I lost my credit card but I still have other resources. Literally I have my debit card and as much
cash as I’m happy to carry. On a
different level, dealing with this minor emergency has reminded me that I also
have the wherewithal to handle adversity.
I can stay calm and figure out the next step, ask the right questions
and even find solutions. I feel really
It’s a good
feeling. It’s not one I’m especially
familiar with. I usually think of myself
as a bit lame and weak. Even though I
have lots of evidence to the contrary, I assume that I’ll crumble under
pressure or adversity.
think I’m alone in this. Many of us fear
what we will do when the worst happens, only to find that if it comes (which it
often doesn’t) then we handle it just fine.
The worst often isn’t as bad as we thought it would be. Sometimes we even thrive.
is we can’t really plan for such situations.
We can’t predict or map out what we will do in all eventualities. But the missing credit card escapade has
taught me a lesson that I believe is useful for feeling resilient in any
troublesome situation: just take the next step.
One step. Whatever that is,
regardless of how small it seems.
However much that step seems like a drop in the ocean compared to the
challenge that affronts us.
account. Ring the helpline. Ask the locals.
verb and switch the noun to another accordingly. Repeat if necessary.
next step. Then the one after. And the
one after that.
Repetition. Build up your resilience muscle one small
action at a time.
the next step.
you felt resilient? And what would be
your top tip that you’ve learnt from that experience? I’d love to know! Get in touch by commenting below or via social
media: there’s Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest or the A Life Of One’s Own Facebook page.
And of course you can also email me (firstname.lastname@example.org).