Every time I hear someone say these two words, I kind of wish I’d trademarked them so I could get credit. Alas, I didn’t make up these words. I would not ever be entitled to a residual check for them. Nevertheless, I want to share them with you.
So, wait for it. Drumroll. Two of my favorite words are: FOR NOW . . .
Do you think these two words are important? Let’s discuss.
When considering a major decision, I sometimes use time as a barometer. What will this look like to me in a week or a month or a year? Will it still matter? Or can I make a choice FOR NOW and have the ability to revisit it later?
In the emotionally charged arena of divorce mediation, I often ask my clients to make several decisions FOR NOW. Whether they’re considering a custody schedule for the kids, or who’s going to be responsible for their health insurance expenses, many of my clients are overwhelmed and therefore sometimes unwilling to make permanent decisions. The words, FOR NOW, take that permanency away, and thus eliminate some of the pressures they’re experiencing. Applying the FOR NOW concept to something that has the potential to trouble them is, in my opinion, an instant stress reliever. And not merely stress relief. FOR NOW can also be considered a tool for stress management.
When I’m encouraging my divorce mediation clients to take a look at the FOR NOW concept, I often cite the obvious example that their four-year-old daughter’s needs will certainly change by the time she’s 12. I want these parents to take a breath or two, and to try to be a bit less overwhelmed. Embracing impermanence is one way of getting through the challenge of making end-of-relationship decisions. When I explain to my clients that they can make a parenting decision FOR NOW and revisit it in six months, not surprisingly, their body language immediately reflects relaxation and relief.
Another reason I love FOR NOW is that I believe when FOR NOW is meant to be over, there will likely be a better outcome. There will be unforeseen advantages in that FOR NOW moment. We will be gathering valuable lessons to benefit us in the future. We will be strengthening our own resilience. We will be equipping ourselves with new skill sets and tools to navigate tomorrow’s challenges.
I think it’s human nature to seek permanence. We get married for better or for worse. We make major purchases like houses, cars, and fine jewelry with the expectation that we’ll have them for a long time. And yet our life experiences tell us that nothing lasts forever. So why not embrace impermanence?
Whether you are in the midst of a divorce, contemplating a job change, or putting your house up for sale, trust the process. If you consciously shift your thoughts away from OH MY GOD and lean towards FOR NOW, you will realize that your potential is infinite.
Isn’t that a wonderful thing?