You're reading the blog of

Adii Pienaar

Now working on Receiptful. Co-Founder & ex-CEO of WooThemes. Author of Brandiing. New Dad. Ex-Rockstar.

A New Normal

Every now and again, what was normal before shifts and we find ourselves in a space called "a new normal".<...>

This shouldn't be a surprise to anyone, because as the adage goes, the only constant in life is change.

What I think is interesting about those times when we find ourselves aware that we've reached a new normal is how we act and operate within that space.


I've recently been training to run my first marathon (in Berlin in September) and have just entered my peak training weeks. In the last 3 months though, I've been increasing the intensity of my training considerably.

The result of this has been two-fold:

  1. I'm running stronger than ever before; and
  2. I've completely forgotten how it feels to be 100% free of any aches and pains. :)

It is that latter realisation that made me aware of how I was acting in within a new normal space. In the past, I'd run 3 times a week and clock 80 or 90 kilometres a month. Now I run 5 times a week, where a hour run is a short run and I clock in excess of 50 kilometres most weeks.

The aches and pains are just a sign that my body is transforming and catching up to this new normal.


So to come back to what I said about how we act and operate within this new normal...

What I've learnt about myself is that the only way to push through these transitions / transformations / new normality is to lean into it.

The irony for me in my running has been that the best way that I've managed to counter the aches and pains is to continue running. Because running is already the new normal, whereas the aches and pains are a result of my other parts of me or my experience that's still playing catch up.

This is probably true for many other aspects of life.

You meet someone new you like. The first couple of dates are exhilarating, but also awkward every now and again, because you're still getting to know each other. The best thing you could do is stick with that journey, lean in and focus on the good parts (the uncomfortable parts will catch up).

Or you start a new business. It's fun and adventurous working on a new idea that you're passionate about. You have some traction, but not enough to make you feel that you're onto a viable business. Or the highs aren't high enough to drown out the lows. What should you do? Show up, do the work & keep on keeping on.

This is making the decision to proactively act within this new normal space instead of just reacting.

We always have the option to react to the aches, pains and discomfort. And it mostly seems like the easier approach that offers a short-term exit.

Choosing that path though is likely the thing that prevents us from acting and succeeding.

Join 3,000+ rockstars who get my best content directly in their inbox: