Change is inevitable, whether you want it or not. Whether you’re happy about it or apprehensive, it can be terrifying because it can be a risk. This change can cause stress and other emotions in the body. But not all change has to be a negative thing. Change can provide an opportunity to step out and perhaps try something new like a different career. It can also help to harden you both mentally and physically by forcing you into situations you might not usually choose. Change can provide you that push forward that you need.
There is a movie starring Goerge Clooney called Up In The Air. George Clooney’s character works for a company, and his job is to deliver bad news to employees across the country that their job is being eliminated. Their pitch is a “change is good” pitch. Losing their job will force them into doing something else that perhaps they like better. One person wanted to be a chef but settled on their job because he had to pay the bills. Now because of this change, he can have the chance to follow his dreams and cook for a living.
The goal when dealing with change is to learn how to control your thinking, and learn to accept and grow.
Do you have control
Often things happen that are out of your control, and there is nothing you can do about it. People who you don’t get along with or agree with narcissists and those you know will never change their ways. Instead of focussing on what you can’t control, spend your time concentrating on what you can control.
Look for ways to provide solutions to problems instead of complaining about what is wrong or what needs to be changed. Be the answer to the problem and not the problem itself.
Take care of yourself
Change that is a result of a death, job change, move, or a relationship can be traumatizing and cause stress and anxiety. Positive change can also come with some distress. Think about each year you moved up a grade in school or when you graduated. Chances are you were excited about college or work, but with that excitement came some fear of change.
It’s ok to mourn the loss of a loved one but don’t go through the process alone. Speak to family members, friends, or a professional counselor to help you through a difficult time.
Continue to eat right and exercise and take care of yourself during times of grief and change. Pay close attention to what your body is telling you.
The past is just that, past! You should look back to find examples of how you’ve overcome challenges before but don’t dwell on the past. Be present and in the moment. Don’t worry about the future too much, either. Worrying about the future can take your mind off of what is happening today. There is a quote I often use that states, “Worrying does not take away tomorrow’s troubles; it takes away today’s peace.”
If you need to step back for a moment, do so. Take some deep breaths and calm your mind and body.
Check yourself and your mind
When things are changing around you, it becomes easy to get wrapped up in inadequate or improper thinking patterns. If you let your mind start taking over and see everything in black and white or catastrophize the situation, it will be hard to get out of that rut. Interrupt your thinking patterns before they take control. Try practicing meditation for 10-20 minutes to clear your mind or go for a run or a workout at the gym.
Remember to think positive thoughts and remind yourself of how you’ve overcome challenges put in front of you in the past. Focus on your strengths and not your weaknesses, and you will find the power needed to overcome.
The most successful people see change as a positive opportunity rather than something to fear. Change helps to put life into perspective and provides the chance to look at what is most important for you. Are you taking on a change of jobs for better opportunities or for more money to support your family? What is important to you? Prioritize your thoughts and then make the change.
Years ago, I worked in the health club business and spent over 4 hours a day commuting to and from work. I was in the car, on a train, and in a subway traveling into New York City and Brooklyn for 20 hours a week. I decided for my sanity I needed a change. I wasn’t spending any time at home and would get up at 5:00 and come back home by 8:30 every night.
The stress became too much for me, so I moved on. In my mind and on paper, I set a goal and a timeframe. I clearly remember sitting in the cafe of the health club with a pen and paper writing out goals and a plan. I wish I kept that paper.
When you prioritize, make sure you add your health and well-being to the mix. Include your physical and mental health, both working out and talking with others. In doing so, you will learn to embrace transitions in your life and see them as an opportunity to reach higher.
Change presents itself in many different forms and can occur at any time in your life. It can be frightening and cause disruption but knowing how to deal with change will help alleviate stress and present new opportunities
“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like” – Lao Tzu
What do you do in your life to deal with change? Comment below.