Monday, 29 April 2013

Blizzards in April, Adventures In Adversity

Spring is often late in the north Peace. This year winter has lingered longer than most and all of us were relieved when warmer temperatures finally began to erode the snow banks and the grass began to re-emerge! This morning Mother Nature, in a particularly cruel twist, brought back winter  for one last blast. Five centimeters of snow fell over freezing rain with 50 km winds and blowing snow making driving a nasty challenge. All this on the second to last day of April!

Our district people took the event in stride. Buses were cancelled. Contingency plans were rolled out as staff, students and parents dealt with the situation. We're a resilient bunch up here. In my 24 years working in the district I have witnessed snowfalls in every month on the calendar. Our ability to cope with such events is one of the things that makes working here so interesting.

Not everyone appreciated the challenge. Quite frankly, snow in late April is quite hard to take, even for me, and as anyone who's seen my penguin presentations knows, I like it cold. For the most part, however folks took the event in stride. By tomorrow, the sun will (hopefully) be back and today's event will be just another story about living in the north.

Being resilient helps with more than coping with adverse unseasonable weather.  Positive Psychologist Shawn Achor identifies several strategies for dealing with life's challenges. Amongst them are ideas like: no matter how bad things are; always try to identify a positive outcome or a way to find an opportunity, even if it’s just to acknowledge that the challenge can be seen as an opportunity to grow. Find ways to keep motivated, even if it means getting motivation from different parts of one's life. Focus on what's within our control. We might not be in a position to decide what the outcome will be, or to have any control over the situation but at the very least we can choose our attitudes and reactions.

I'll admit, looking outside first thing in the morning to encounter a howling blizzard is not my preferred way to start the week. Seeing how well our people coped with the challenge, however was great. I feel fortunate to be working with and for such resilient and optimistic people.

No comments:

Post a Comment