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Find Relief from the Summer Heat

August 11, 2010

The summer heat has been oppressive in North Carolina. I have no doubt that there are other places much worse and other people who suffer far greater consequences at the hands of the earth’s belligerent temper tantrums. I try to think of those less fortunate when I complain, and remember how simple it is for me to find physical relief from the 105 degree outdoor temperature.

It’s my peace of mind that suffers and for me that is a real force to be reckoned with in the heat of the southern summers. A northerner by nature and nurture, I have rebelled against one summer after another for almost twenty years.  Sequestering myself within the four walls of air-conditioned quarters is just not a comfortable living environment for me. There’s something unnatural about having to fight heat and insects at a time when a person should have their hands buried in the earth and their clothes covered with dirt. Just when the gardens should be blooming profusely, and sometimes are, it’s impossible to be outside enjoying them. Instead, I find myself gazing longingly from the window wishing I could stand the heat long enough to weed.

Today I have entered the pre-contemplation stage of my need to deal with my attitude the southern climate within which I live. Instead of feeling restless, angry and pent-up it is indeed time to make peace with my lot. I’m not quite sure I’m ready to face my frustration. It’s so much easier to complain. Furthermore, I don’t know quite how to get a handle on something that just “feels” so wrong. That is precisely why I am in pre-contemplation. I have begun thinking about thinking about it and that is progress!

We all face challenges large and small. By most people’s standards, irritating weather conditions is not something that should even be on the list of serious life issues.  I do suspect that in my case it points to a larger issue that I have yet to acknowledge. Pre-contemplation is an important step to take whenever we want to make a change in our lives. When we begin thinking about some discomfort in our life, even peripherally, we are moving toward change. It is not a thing to be minimized. In fact, we can pat ourselves on the back when we enter pre-contemplation because contemplation is right around the corner and a more authentic life is right behind it.

Change takes time. It’s a step at a time process. It doesn’t matter how long we’ve had an issue, when we realize it’s time for a change any movement is good, even just the tiniest step. Even just considering that perhaps it’s time for me to start thinking about thinking about accepting the southern climate has given me just a touch of relief from the summer heat. Personal growth is an amazing process even when it’s a weather issue! Imagine how good it feels to decide to take on a difficult issue ~ like losing weight and getting healthy or making changes in an important relationship. Entering the pre-contemplation stage on those issues will definitely take our minds off the weather!

D Sander

3 Comments leave one →
  1. August 11, 2010 7:55 pm

    I read your blog and thought – lucky woman being somewhere sunny and hot! I am in England and we have made a national pastime out of complaining about the weather – usually because we are having too much rain and its not hot enough! I try to remember how unbearable it was when I lived in Qatar in the Arabian Gulf where it was 120F and 99% humidity and as you say, you couldn’t bear to go outside.

    I spent this afternoon doing some gardening and admiring all the beautiful flowers and green lawns – the result of having lots of rain and not too much heat, so I guess we are lucky!

    Love your blogs – women all over the world are facing similar issues.

  2. August 12, 2010 1:25 pm

    I feel for you dealing with such oppressive heat. NC summers are touch even when not as extreme as this years’. And I admire you for using your discomfort as an opportunity for reflection about change. Great post!

  3. August 12, 2010 1:26 pm

    Of course I meant to say NC summers are tough (not touch!)

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