Change is difficult!
Occasionally its manageable. More often than not it is tough to deal with.
Some changes in life happen voluntarily for most of us. A lot of them are a result of circumstances. Whether we like it or nor change is part of us; professionally, personally, physically, financially and in all aspects of life.
All of us have heard the saying “Change is the only constant”. But, knowing that we must go through change repeatedly in life does not make it easier.
Perhaps what makes change so difficult for us is the fear of the unknown. We feel threatened by losing what we are comfortable with and stepping into unknown territory. We fear that the safety of what we know will get replaced with the insecurity of undefined terrain. Sometimes this fear is so big that we continue to hold on to things we are unhappy with because we fear that the “new” could be worse. This is often a reason why people continue in abusive relationships or unfulfilling jobs. What if the next relationship is worse or what if I don’t find anyone? What if a new job is more demanding or does not offer the same financial security as this one?
Belief systems also sometimes hamper our need to change. If I walk out of this relationship that I feel trapped in am I being selfish? If I let go of a secure job to follow my dream am I being impulsive and rash?
And behind this fear and belief systems lurks the discomfort of letting go of control
Sometimes we willingly take on a change and then find that we can’t deal with it and going back to the old and familiar seems like an easy choice. We may have started with wanting this change but when we get into the new situation it becomes extremely difficult to deal with.
So the quintessential question is – does change always have to be so unpredictable and hard?
The simple answer is no.
The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance. Alan Watts
Take control of the change:
Accepting change is a good way to work through it but there is more that you can do by taking control of the change and how you are handling it. When you go though any change ask yourself 3 questions about how you need to deal with this new phase in your life.
- Who do you need to be to get through this change successfully? When you are through this change and you look back how do you want to feel about yourself and the way you handled the change? What do you want to be remembered for after the change? The person who led the change, who made decisions, who was supportive of others, the one who helped others deal with the change? What attitudinal and belief shifts do you need to become this person?
- What changes in your behaviour and habits are needed to be able to handle this change successfully? Do you need to cutback on expenses, do more regular planning, spend more time on certain activities that you could take for granted? How should your schedule change to make you more successful through this change?
- How can you make this change work positively for you? You can either go through change and let it happen by accepting it passively or you can use it to your advantage. How can you use this change to build the road towards your dreams and aspirations? What opportunities do you see for growth in this?