Coming to a crossroads in life can be a painful process. Doesn’t it seem like you are just doing your own thing, minding your own business not hurting anybody and then, Wham! before you know it, there are changes a-foot and major decisions to be made. How did I get here? Why? What do I do next? How do I avoid making a mistake? More importantly, how do I avoid making the same mistake again? Why do I feel so alone? How will I know which is the right path to take next?
Here are some tips on effectively coping with change:
What’s the worst that can happen?
Understanding a change is the important first step to managing it because usually we are scared of change and afraid of the unknown. Try to figure out if the worst that can happen is actually as bad as what you think can happen? Learning about the details of the change can help things feel easier. Remember a time previously where change and decision making was scary and yet it all turned out brilliantly. Sometimes it's not as bad as it may seem at first, and it just takes a little time to get used to.
Celebrate the positives
Focusing on the positives can help you feel better about the change overall. They might not be completely obvious to begin with, and it might also take some time, but it’s worth it.
If the unwanted change is within your control, taking an active approach to coping has been shown to be useful. Try engaging in problem solving or goal setting to proactively address unwanted developments. Focusing on the problem at hand, developing a plan of action, and asking for advice are useful active strategies.
If the unwanted change is beyond your control, take a reflective approach. Accepting that there are things beyond your control and choosing to be comfortable with this is likely to bring greater calm than playing the blame game or waging unwinnable wars. Viewing change as an opportunity to learn and grow, rather than a setback, might also help you to turn that frown upside down!
Manage your stress
Improving your ability to handle stress will go a long way to helping you deal with change. Try practicing mindfulness or meditation, or engaging in other relaxation techniques, take a nature walk, have a relaxing bath, listen to calming music. Consider talking to friends or family for advice or emotional support, or by investigating options for professional help.
Don’t forget, it’s perfectly normal to feel overwhelmed if there is too much happening at once. This is when your best approach is to put in place the things that are going to get you through it with as much ease and comfort and as less stress as possible.
Hi, I'm Anna Bradbury and I'm an experienced Life Coach and member of ICF (International Coach Federation). I love helping people and couples realise their goals and dreams. With your hard work and focus, my guidance, and proven Life Coaching techniques, you can achieve all you desire.