Transitions Kuel Category Expert: Nancy Tepper
Why haven’t I noticed the coat before?
“it seemed like everyone was wearing this coat”
Sometimes we don’t see things that are right in front of us until we are directed toward noticing them. Recently, my daughter pointed out that seemingly everyone has the same winter coat from Amazon. I didn’t know anything about this coat, and I certainly had never noticed it. Then, the next day when I was walking to get coffee, I saw someone wearing one. Then I saw someone else wearing it on my walk back. Over the next week, it seemed like everyone was wearing this coat. How had I never noticed this super popular coat before? And now I see it everywhere?
Nothing Has Changed Except My Attention:
The strangest part was nothing had changed! It’s not like everyone started wearing this winter coat just because my daughter had pointed it out. No, the only thing that had changed was my attention. This winter coat wasn’t new. It was just new to me because my attention now gravitated towards it.
The Baader-Meinhof Effect:
This phenomenon of noticing something that has been ever present is called the Baader-Meinhof effect. In this coat analogy, my brain had been exposed to brand new information from my daughter, and it took notice. Something can be right in front of you for your entire life, but if you are not specifically looking, you may never see it.
Transition Towards Gratitude:
“Don’t wait for tomorrow”
While it may not be the same as noticing a physical thing, this is a good reminder for all of us to stop waiting for someone to draw attention to the things we should already be noticing. Given our communities, families, and friends are lacking so much right now, I implore you to look around you and start seeing all the wonderful things you already have in your life. Open your mind to seeing things that are literally right before your eyes that your brain hasn’t focused on- and try to see these things with a newfound sense of deep gratitude. Notice your family, your friends, your health, your home, and all the beautiful things that life has beset on you and start to really appreciate them. Don’t wait for tomorrow because as we have all learned over this pandemic, you only really have today.
About the Author:
Nancy Tepper is a 54 year- old mother of three living in New York City and having fun in this next chapter. She loves tennis, yoga, and is an avid reader. Nancy loves spending time with family and friends and loves to help people. She is currently a member of the Board and Executive Director of Stand Up! Girls which is a non-profit offering stand-up comedy classes to under-served girls in the five boroughs of New York City. Nancy is also a co-founder of MT Nesters podcast which offers valuable advice and inspiration to women who are empty nested and trying to pivot. Lastly, Nancy is a certified Life Coach and works with people who want to transition, or individuals who want to make positive changes in their lives