Surviving and thriving through change

And so we reach the final chapter of our choices, chances and changes series. This final article explores the impact of making choices and taking chances. Ultimately all this decision making leads to changes and new experiences which can bring some serious fear and discomfort.

If you are moving through a series of changes right now, hopefully some of these strategies will support you to sit with the fear and uncertainty of it all.

How to work thrive through change:

1) Make the ‘main thing’ the main thing.

Take time to reflect on what area do you want to see a change in. This is where you put your attention and energy. Often we want to change EVERYTHING. Our energy is then divided between so many things that nothing gets done. 

2) Write it down- what is your main thing you want to change?

Have it on display so you can constantly refer to it and see it. I keep 2 or 3 post-its on my laptop as reminders of my goal or ‘main thing’

3) Start small and stay committed to that small change.

When you do decide on your ‘main thing’, list some small steps that you could do and introduce just ONE change at the beginning.

4) Create some self-care time every morning for you.

This could be as short as 15 mins (If this seems hard, just take note of the amount of time you spend on social media). Take this time to do some stretches, breath work or a short meditation. Then give yourself some time to write down your thoughts and reflect on the ‘main thing’ that you want to change. Your brain is most responsive in the morning.

5) Take a nano break when you feel overwhelmed.

When we introduce change, our mind is going to initially give us 100 reasons why we shouldn’t do that walk or meditation or apply for that job etc. We might even start to feel physically anxious or nervous. I love the idea of a nano breath break. This simply means sitting down and taking 3-5 really slow deep breaths to help you feel grounded again.

6) Create a ‘to-do list and a ‘to-wonder’ list.

Everyone will be familiar with the ‘to-do’ list approach but the coach I worked with introduced me to the ‘to wonder’ list. In the past, I would often spend time deliberating and weighing up my options and not getting anything done. For example, I was wondering if I should do a PhD? How would it impact me financially? etc. So my coach told me to write those concerns on another ‘to wonder’ list. I would then use this list to guide me when I was writing out my to-do list for the week. The interesting thing is by ticking off my ‘to-do’ list I tackled a lot of the big wondering concerns I had. For example; by doing small steps like contacting my bank and payroll at work, I was able to get a better understanding of my financial situation. I had the facts, instead of worrying about it. I felt empowered.

7) Don’t be too hard on yourself.

It’s really important to remember to talk kindly to ourselves and let go of harsh judgement if we forget or go back to old habits. There is enough of that in the world. Instead, think of yourself like a small child that ventured off the path and then guide them back in the direction of your goal.

There is no one answer when it comes to navigating change. Sometime the changes are choices we have made and sometimes they are a result of choices someone else is making. Either way, change rarely feels comfortable- its not meant too. And in those moments when you feel abit lost or unsure, just come back to a wonderful question my own coach gave me recently…. ‘What’s good for me today?’… that’s all you need to focus on.

Let that guide you in those moments of uncertainty.

MC x