How to deal with Change?

Change is an inevitable part of life, it can be daunting, overwhelming or fulfilling, the impact of any change depends on your attitude.

Change comes in so many different forms and often at unexpected times it can be a change in career, the loss of a loved one, moving house, being made redundant or starting a family. Life transitions, even positive ones, can be significant stressors that leave people at risk of experiencing mental distress. You can better handle change by focusing on the elements of any change that you can control; this will help you navigate any periods of transition more successfully and minimise any feelings of stress that the change causes.

As Agents of Change, we have developed a small check list to consider when experiencing change.

  • Make a list this sounds simple, yet often when we are experiencing a major change, things can feel out of control. We can feel more emotional, and it can be difficult to remain on top of what needs to be done daily with any new responsibilities or more free time on hand. Take a moment to stop, reflect and consider what you need to do to feel more in control. By preparing a simple list and writing down what needs to be done, you free up mental space and have created a simple path of what actions you need to do. The satisfaction you derive by ticking items of the list will be enormous, so don’t forget to reward yourself as you begin to tick items off your list!
  • Maintain your routine to the best of your ability as this offers stability and comfort. Simple things like going to bed and waking up at your normal time each day can provide a sense of structure. Continue to engage in your hobbies and interests, stay in contact with friends and on top of self-care all help to give us a sense of routine. Think about your usual habits and daily activities that bring you a sense of joy and peace and work some of them into your daily life.
  • Seek support – it is critical that you don’t hesitate to reach out to your support network during times of change. Talk to family, friends, or even see a professional and share your concerns. Just by talking about them, you can help process difficult emotions or negative thoughts and ease the pressure that you are building up internally. Consciously spend as much time as possible with people you love and who care about you, as it will be uplifting. You are as never alone as you think and the people who are willing to help you, are far more numerous than you think.
  • Try to stay in the moment –A period of change and uncertainty, will often increase stress as we consider the future and dread facing it, yet forget about now. It is important to create time to check in and take a moment to be present with our body and thoughts. Set aside time daily to practice mindfulness or some other relaxation technique, which may be as simple as getting outside in nature that will help us to focus on, and remain in, the present.

Above all, be patient and kind to yourself as you navigate change. Adjusting to new circumstances takes time, and setbacks are a natural part of the process. Set realistic expectations for yourself and celebrate the small victories along the way.

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