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wisdom of dogs, Issue #060-- Year of Equanimity
April 27, 2022

Equanimity and supply chain issues

At first I thought it was about spoiled Americans figuring out that you can't always have what you want, exactly when you want it.

Turns out it is about something deeper and more universally human.

Being Adaptable

I've grown accustomed to grocery store shelves that aren't fully stocked. I noticed when my local Trader Joe’s rearranged their aisles, cutting down the amount of shelves that needed to be filled.

I tried to be adult about it. There was still food.

Maybe I couldn’t get fresh raspberries in February, but I was okay with that. I could treat myself to their delicious dark Morello cherries in a jar.

There was always something else something you could substitute, right?

More than dessert

But then I needed a computer.

Off I go to the store because I'm not smart enough to buy one online. I am aware of the shortage so I wasn’t shocked that stock was sparse.

But I felt it – the angst that has gripped so many people lately.

This time it wasn't as simple as substituting cherries for raspberries. It wasn't a slight plan adjustment in my dessert menu.

It was the difference between being able to run my business and not.

Making Do

You can only repair and upgrade an old computer so many times.

I had been repairing, upgrading and making do for months.

I needed a new computer. I knew what I wanted but I didn't expect to find it. And I didn't.

I managed to find something that would work. Not ideal, but acceptable and within my budget.

I didn’t need it until June, but I started shopping in April. That helped. But it is also a symptom of the fear I was denying I felt.

I have confidence, a little, in my ability to compensate for supply chain issues with long range planning and adaptability.

But there is a fear at the bottom of it all. A fear that all my efforts to compensate, might not be enough.

Fear

I grew up with store shelves that were filled, often overflowing.

My parents did not allow me to get everything I wanted. As an adult, my budget didn’t allow me to get everything I wanted either.

But it was there.

Now it’s not. And that changes things.

I have to accept that I might not in fact get everything I need. And I want to behave like our peasant farmer.

Was it unfortunate that I couldn’t get raspberries? Maybe. Maybe not. The cherries didn’t sit pretty on top of my dessert, but they were delicious.

Would it be terrible if I didn’t find a new computer? Maybe. Maybe not.

Perhaps I would learn to better use the capabilities of my phone.

Perhaps my business model would change.

Perhaps I would simply have to slow down. Work less.

No more plan

Equanimity is easy when things go according to plan, when you can find a substitute or you only need to wait a few months for a nonessential.

The hard part comes in knowing that the time will come, when I won’t be able to get what I need. And somehow, I will have to face that with equanimity too.

I will have to adjust and be willing to say like our peasant farmer:

Maybe. Maybe not.

Happy Tail Wags

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