No matter what stage of life we find ourselves in, we all adjust, successfully or unsuccessfully, to the changes in life. Some changes will be thrust upon us, others may be brought by cultural expectations.
A grocery store may stop carrying our favorite flavor of ice cream. The small changes are generally just minor inconveniences. If we start a new job this week, the changes in our life may be more difficult. Then, there are the mega life-altering changes that really test our strength.
To exist is to change, to change is to mature, to mature is to go on creating oneself endlessly. Henri Bergson
What does maturity have to do with change? Usually, wisdom comes with each experience. If we are willing to examine very carefully the choices we have made, bad or good, we can develop and apply this wisdom when change comes our way again. Dealing successfully with change can be one of our biggest challenges and assets.
5 Strategies for Successfully Dealing with Change
1. Expect change. It will come. At any and every point in our lifetime, we will experience change. It’s something that every human being experiences, much like breathing. We can affect it, but we cannot stop it.
2. Anxiety and discomfort are the sidekicks of change. Know that there will be these feeling on some level with every change. They are typical. Understand they are temporary.
3. It’s all about managing our expectations. Keep a positive but realistic frame of mind. Learning to flow with change is far better than resistance. To resist is to invite the needless risk of a negative outcome.
4. Denial is our enemy. There are no shortcuts. Somethings are inevitable. Face life squarely believing that what is to come will not undo us and that we have sufficient strength to make it through.
5. Prepare yourself. Through practical, situational education, successful change can occur. Take an honest, direct look at upcoming change and plan, plan, plan. If you leave the house on a cloudy day without an umbrella, you may end up all wet.
With every change, there may be a new opportunity around the next corner. Believe that as one door closes another brighter one will open.
A personal note from the author: These five stategies are heartfelt and hard-won. Change is often scary and not for the faint of heart, however, it can bring some of life’s greatest rewards.