The Smells of Your Relocation

It’s been smoky here lately.  Bushfires surrounding Sydney have caused smoke to sit in the air leaving a haze in the sky and an acrid taste in the mouth.

I hate the smell of a bushfire.  At first awareness of the scent my heart beats faster, my mouth dries and I feel compelled to look around and locate the source of the smell. Past experiences have left me with an automatic threat response to the smell.

Smells, like sounds, are a sensory factor.  They lie in the background but can become strong associations in our psyche with people, places or events. 

So when we move the new smells can continually remind us we are far from home.  I remember arriving in one new location and my 4-year-old daughter announcing loudly to all around her “poo, it smells here!”

Her instant response was negative but, thankfully, that negative response didn’t become a pattern for her as she approached other new smells, tastes, sights and sounds with a sense of adventure and curiosity. 

Again –as with the sounds around us - it’s our knee-jerk reactions to the little differences that build our attitude to the new location.  And it’s our ability to strategically change negative responses to ones that are more positive (or curious, or open) that will set us up to succeed in adapting to our new home.

What are the smells of your location and how are you responding to them?

And what smells are you missing most?


Rachel Yates