How we can embrace change
The Greek philosopher Heraclitus once said “the only constant in life is change’.
We all react differently to change, some of us find it really difficult and unsettling whilst others find it exciting and look forward to new opportunities and adventures that might arise.
However we feel about change, it is an opportunity to learn new skills, experience new situations, become more adaptable and develop as an individual all of which help our growth and our ability to cope with future challenge.
Very often our first reaction to change is to resist it, to try to hold onto what we know for fear of losing something or being pushed out of our comfort zone, however if we can learn to embrace change it can really benefit our wellbeing, mindset and happiness levels.
So how can we become a little more comfortable with change:
Acknowledge the change - a good first step with anything challenging we might be facing is to acknowledge and accept it. Once we can do this, then we can start to move on and recognise what it is we need to do to manage the situation and move forward.
Reframe your thinking - often our first thoughts about change is how this might negatively impact us or our lives. Instead of focussing on the negatives, think about or write down some of the good things that will arise or how you or those around you might benefit as a result of the change.
Take some time - instead of reacting immediately when we are faced with unexpected change, take some time to think about what is happening. This could be just going for a walk, having a break at work or ‘sleeping on it’. This can help us to have a new perspective on what is happening, think more clearly about our action plan to manage the change and make better decisions.
Create a list of changes - write down all the changes that you have been through in your life since you were a child which highlights that as humans we are constantly going through change. Reflect on some of those situations; what it was that you did, what were some of the successes and failures that you had, what did you learn and what did the change lead to. This helps to show us that we have been through change before and we can get through change again.
Focus on what you can control - we often find change hard because we feel as though we are not in control of what is happening to us. When this happens make a list of everything that you are concerned about and then identify; what is with your control, what is within your influence and what is outside of your control. Then focus your time and energy on what you can control and influence such as your reactions, what you need at that moment in time, your decisions or choices and your relationships with others.
Share your worries with others - we will all face difficult times and talking through how we are feeling, what our fears or concerns are and what support we might need can really help. Other people will be able to reassure use, share their experiences and advice and most of all listen.
Learn to embrace change - start to introduce smaller elements of change into your life to help you feel more comfortable with change - this could be anything from going to new places, ordering a different meal to what you would normally order, trying a new hobby or listening to a new type of music or radio station.
Look after yourself - sometimes change can really impact us, it can come as a shock or unsettle our routines. If this is the case then take some time for yourself, do something that makes you happy, take some time off and focus on you and what you need at that point in time.
Reach out for help - if you are still finding managing charge really difficult then reach out for some help.
Change in an integral part of life and without it life would be very stagnant and boring. It won’t always be easy to embrace change but if we can learn to be more open minded to new situations our journey will be a little easier to navigate.
If you would like to talk through how we can support your organisation and your teams please do get in touch with our Director of Wellbeing, Gemma Carter-Morris on email@example.com
Gemma Morris, Director of Wellbeing, Next Steps Consulting