Change seems to have been the one constant in my life – and in the middle of 2016 it is looking like that isn’t going to change any time soon. And there I was hoping that this year would be quiet!
Sometimes it is a colossal pain – it takes energy and perseverance that you sometimes just don’t feel like you have. Whether it be change at work, at home or on a national/ global economic scale it is something that everyone has to deal with.
But the one thing I have learnt is that change is the one area where attitude really does matter! I have learned to make change work for me, especially when it is a change I don’t want.
Change is a part of life, you can’t afford not to embrace it. If you don’t learn to manage it, it will swallow you up.
Below, I have listed some of the strategies I use, since long before I was conscious that I was developing a change management philosophy, to thrive on change.
Don’t React, Anticipate
Consider where things are going, anticipate what might happen. Worrying is counterproductive but anticipating the variables is just plain common sense. Keep your ears and eyes open. Be conscious of what is going on around you.
Prepare, Prepare And Then Prepare Some More
Be Informed. If you don’t know something, find it out! Read, read and read some more – in this age of instant access that we live in there is no excuse for being uninformed about anything. Make specific plans for upcoming changes so you feel more in control. Be active, not passive. Putting you head in the sand doesn’t achieve anything.
Accept The Inevitable
Don’t fight change that is inevitable. Embrace it and move forward. Be flexible. Be imaginative. Create! Don’t procrastinate. It is important to adapt and innovate as quickly as you can. Make lemonade out of lemons!
Seek Out Support & Inspiration
There is no reason to feel isolated! Find someone who will listen. People can’t always give you the answers, but sometimes a problem shared really is a problem diminished. Look for someone or something that will encourage you, lift you up, inspire you, and spur you on. Read inspirational and motivational books and social media.
Don’t Unpack and Live There
Don’t be too hard on yourself when you are feeling down or can’t adapt as quickly as you had hoped or others expect. We’re not perfect beings but our greatest strength is our capacity to adapt and learn, to grow from that which challenges us.
See The Opportunities
Keep telling yourself that you are stretching out of your too familiar comfort zone. It is inevitably uncomfortable but that is the nature of growth. Try to concentrate on the lessons and be positive about the new opportunities opening up to you. See both the danger and the opportunity, but focus on the latter.
People instinctively avoid change, avoid moving away from their comfort zone. Make small changes occasionally to become more comfortable with it. Take a different route to work, take the bus, try a different restaurant, strike up a conversation with a random person, visit a museum, go do something you wouldn’t usually consider, try line dancing classes, sleep on the wrong side of the bed. Comfort zones are lovely, but exploring the unknown is our route to growth.
And Finally … Hang Tough
There is one truism that I have learned to trust, this too shall pass! In a day, a week, a month … it is all just weather 🙂