Health & Wellness / Mental Health

How Do You Feel About Change?

How do you feel about change?  Do you like it?  Do you welcome new things into your life?  Or are you more the type that likes things to remain status quo? Are you the type that doesn’t like anything disrupting the apple cart?

Many people find change difficult and feel disoriented, unbalanced and isolated when changes come their way.  If that’s you, you can create a different belief system about change – a positive one filled with anticipation and hope.  So the next time you’re faced with change, instead of asking, “Why me?”, you will look for the opportunity in the change, asking how it can be helping you to grow in some new and exciting way.

More than ever, it is important for us to look at change from a different perspective, to see the possibilities that change can bring.  But in order to take on this new perspective, we need to get a better idea on how we see change currently.  The short activity below can perform a quick self-check on your feelings and attitude about change.  Are you more inclined to see change in a positive or negative light?  Only by knowing where you currently stand can be more aware around what needs to shift.

Activity: “Current Feelings about Change”

  1. Check either box “Negative” or “Positive” that best reflects your initial reaction to each word or phrase listed.  Go with your initial ‘gut reaction’ and don’t overthink when deciding. If you feel neutral, decide if your reaction leans more to the positive or to the negative.
  2. When finished, count up the number of positive and negative responses you have and record on the Totals boxes at the bottom.

 

    Positive + Negative –
1 Uncertain    
2 Postpone    
3 Impose    
4 Adapt    
5 Reorganize    
6 Opportunity    
7 Retrain    
8 Cancel    
9 Plan    
10 Shift    
11 Re-deploy    
12 Transition    
13 Ambiguous    
14 Let’s try something different!    
15 Starting from scratch    
16 Change    
17 Adjust    
18 Compromise    
19 Flexibility    
20 Spontaneous    
Totals =    

 

 Reflect on Your Results:

  • Do you tend to view change as either a challenge or an opportunity? Why?
  • When you think about your current view of change, what from your past has influenced this perspective?
  • What previous changes have you experienced that you resisted at first, but now see have turned out for the better?
  • What concerns are fair to have about change even if when it’s viewed it in a positive way?

It’s human to resist change.  We could argue that human nature is quite predictable when it comes to change.  The fact of the matter is that we want the things in our lives to remain very familiar and stable.  From this desire for predictability grows this resistance to change.  This resistance can be quite vexing as it often stands in the way of our growth and success.  Here are four tips that can help the next time change comes knocking on your door.

  • Notice that you are in the midst of a change. Become aware of the change instead of subconsciously denying it.
  • Face your feelings about the change. Explore what your fears or worries are.   You don’t have to be a victim even when you’re not in control of the change.
  • Adopt an attitude of anticipation. See change as an opportunity.  Identify the benefit that will come with the change.  There is always a benefit and an opportunity.
  • Choose your thoughts and attitude about change. Negative thoughts block your creativity and problem-solving abilities.  Positive thoughts build bridges to possibilities and opportunities.

It’s important to remember that from every change; even the most challenging ones, something good always comes.  Change can actually become a familiar friend.  Change doesn’t have to be something you dread having to handle.  Instead, it could be something you look forward to and welcome, believing that each change you encounter and experience serves a purpose and will eventually lead to good.  You no longer need to waste time looking back at the way things were, but can now accept your new circumstances and wonder what new adventures await you around the next corner.

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