• Robert Clarke MFT

The NEXT Normal


What is normal? Look it up online and you’ll see definitions like, “the usual, average, or typical state or condition.” Yet, it seems like the common belief is that “normal” means forever. All of us have had to make changes in our lives because of concerns about the COVID, and many people have been calling those changes the “new normal.” But those changes aren’t normal; they are temporary and will and have been changing, sometimes on a daily basis.

With the daily news and press conferences from elected officials, it seems like nothing has stayed the same for more than a few days. First it was social distancing, then it was gloves, then masks, then lines at the grocery store. Now, the lines are mostly gone and so are most of the gloves.

The problem with calling something normal, is that the implication of forever makes us feel trapped. “I’m going to be trapped in my house forever.” “I can’t visit my friends.” “It’s scary to go to the grocery store.” None of these things are forever and we aren’t trapped.

I prefer the term, “The Next Normal.” The implication being that things will change again, and again.

Thought questions:

1. As restrictions ease and you move to The Next Normal, what are you looking forward to? (example: eating out at restaurants)

2. What are you going to miss when restrictions ease? (example: fewer cars on the road)

3. What new habits or activities have you started (as a result of restrictions) that you don’t want to change? (example: working from home)

Welcome to my blog!

My posts are purely my own thoughts and opinions and are not meant to give you advice, but instead to give you insight into some of my thinking. My hope is that you will find useful information here as you navigate your life and relationships.

© 2020 by Robert Clarke MFT. CA License #91187

Couples Therapy. Marriage Counseling. Communication, Intimacy, Conflict. EMDR, Web Therapy. LGBTQ Affirming, Gay Friendly,

Transgender Allied.  Burbank / Toluca Lake, CA.  *Click here for Client Portal*