I heard on the news this morning that we have had more snow so far this January than any previous January on record.  Every week we have at least one storm and most weeks it’s two. Shoveling is now a part of our normal routine.

The first big snowstorm was stressful for me. I had two speaking engagements planned which required some travel. I stressed over whether or not to cancel the events, thinking foolishly that maybe the weather forecasters would be wrong and the whole storm would blow over. It’s happened before, right? Not this winter. Every storm ends up being even stronger than originally forecasted.

What’s of particular interest to me is that now, because the challenge and obstacles come with some regularity every week, I have a different attitude about planned events. My whole winter calendar is now in pencil and subject to last minute postponement.

Here are some of my thoughts about life and snow:

1.   We do have the ability to overcome barriers and roadblocks. As we are exposed to more and more challenges, we seem to be better equipped mentally and emotionally to cope.

2.   Shoveling snow is a lot like building your career or your business. It takes a lot of really hard work and at times it seems overwhelming. Little by little, shovel by shovel, you end up clearing a path and moving forward. Persistence works in your favor.

3.   The new snow fall is beautiful. We tend to romanticize about how pretty everything looks until we have to face the practicality of clearing the snow and dealing with logistics. In the beginning, we also romanticize about starting our own business and how wonderful it would be to be your own boss and have flexible time. The practical side is how will you make money? Do you have enough money saved for a start up? What is your business model? We romanticize about how wonderful it would be to be a CEO and then the reality of leading a company and all the stress and complexities associated with that position kick in.

4.   It’s important to be flexible and let go of things we cannot control. Weather is at the top of that list. We can make plans and contingency plans and at the end of the day, we can only do so much planning and then we have to let it go. This is a tough one for me. What about you?

5.   It’s important to remind ourselves that each snowflake is very fragile and delicate. When combined with zillions of other snowflakes, however, it has tremendous clout. The snow can literally paralyze cities and regions of the country. Isn’t there a lesson there as well? Alone, we may not feel very powerful. If we reach out to others and build a strong network to collaborate and build our businesses and careers, we have the support and strength of many.

OK. Since it snowed over a foot again last night, I need to go out and shovel.

Where is the January thaw? I’m ready for a meltdown!!