There was a really well orchestrated panel discussion that captivated my attention, something that these types of things don't always do. The topic was "the new normal".
The economic crisis, backlash against our government, scandals at institutions near and far -- they all beg the question -- as a society have we permanently changed? Is our normal life completely gone and do we now need to live with "the new normal"?
The debate was lively, with opposing views although honestly not all that opposing. But it definitely got me thinking. I don't think it's about "the new normal" or "the old normal" or any kind of "normal." There's no such thing.
Sure, things have changed. No doubt about it. But I'm not sure there was really anything normal, ever. Was the economic boom "normal"? Were the rising property values we enjoyed "normal"? I remember when I bought my first house back in the late '80's, I lost my shirt. The market dropped like a stone, and then of course years later started to skyrocket again. Was that "normal"?
I think it's all a spectrum. Our lives, our economy, our pop culture all move along a spectrum of continual change. Sometimes we are winning, sometimes we are playing catch up. Right now, there's a lot more catch up than there is winning. But this too will change. "Normal" implies a steady state, a way of being, and I don't think that occurs as a permanent way of life. Things are in constant change, so how could there be a "normal"?
Change. Now that's "normal" - new and old.
What's your experience? Jim