How to Navigate Change

Change is in the air, I can feel it. Other people say they can see it. Things are moving and shifting but the energy feels like something bigger is yet to arrive.

One thing we can be sure of in life, is change. Over the course of our lifetime we will experience many changes. Some we want and create, others that take us by surprise and bring us to our knees.

Life is designed to be a series of changes. Every day is a new day. Every experience is a new opportunity. We spend time and energy trying to change who we are physically, emotionally or spiritually.

Yet we are deeply afraid of change.

Even when we desire change, our fear often prevents us from following through on those desires. Change takes us into unknown territory. Fear makes us believe that it is safer to stay where we are than to risk the unknown.

Change is necessary for any kind of growth. A seed can not be a tree. A seed must change to become the tree. Fortunately, a seed never fears the changes needed to become a tree. If seeds were able to doubt themselves as humans do, we may never have been blessed with the mighty redwoods.

What is change?

Change     verb

  1. to become different
  2. to undergo transformation, transition or substitution

For humans, the process of change takes us through many different energies. We may experience a mixture of fear, excitement, anticipation, sadness, expansion, impatience, happiness or other emotion. Different types of change elicit different emotions. You respond differently to a change in your toothpaste than you do to a change in your health.

 

3 Elements of Change

There are different types of change, but the elements stay the same. Even something as simple as a toothpaste change has all the elements!

Ending: For any change to happen there must be an ending. You finish your old toothpaste. Try to make your endings as positive as possible. Tie up loose ends and finish what needs to be done so you feel complete.

Start: This is the uncomfortable part where everything is new, and you are trying to adjust to the change. Your new toothpaste has a different taste and color. The start is where we most often give up. Some starts feel exciting and others cause fear.

New Beginning: You’ve found your rhythm. The toothpaste leaves a refreshing taste in your mouth that you are starting to like. The new beginning is when you start to breathe and relax again. You don’t recognize everything yet, but you are on your way.

 

How to handle change

For most people, a change in toothpaste goes largely unnoticed in the midst of our ever-changing lives. So, what can you do when the changes are big enough to get your attention? Here are some tips on how to handle change.

  • Recognize you are in the process of change. If you need help, refer to the elements of change to find where you are in your transformation.
  • Practice mindfulness. Stay present to what is really happening in this moment and don’t let fear stop your start.
  • Prepare when you can. Big changes such as moving, getting married or having a child can be less stressful when you are prepared.
  • Accept support. Change can feel overwhelming. Allowing family or friends to help can lower your stress. Similar groups, coaches and healthcare professionals can also provide support.
  • Spend time in nature. Helps you to feel grounded.
  • Celebrate your successes. This helps bring more positive energy into your life.

Change is coming, and I am choosing to be excited.

 

Are you experiencing changes in your health or well-being? Could you use some support? Click here to schedule a free Discovery Call with Dr. Melanie Dunlap today!

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