Looking at Change as Growth
Many of us have things in our lives that we hope to change. Perhaps we’d like to pursue a higher-paying job, develop a better work-life balance, or go back to school. Maybe we feel personal improvements are in order, such as losing weight or becoming more confident.
Knowing what steps to take to accomplish a goal is part of the road to success. Oftentimes, however, it is not a lack of information that is holding us back – it is our own resistance to change. While Nike may tout “Just do it,” that is easier said than done.
“Change can be difficult, even when it’s for our own good,” says Mary Pender Greene, a career/executive coach and psychotherapist. “We don’t like to leave the comfortable and familiar in favor of the unknown. Change brings uncertainty, and with this uncertainty comes fear and stress.”
Recognizing that uneasy feelings are common when dealing with changes can aid in accepting them. (Remember your mom telling you on your first day of high school that all your classmates had pits in their stomachs, too?) Go ahead and admit your fear as well as acknowledge that it is uncomfortable to disturb the status quo.
Then, realize that another name for change is growth, and think about progressing to where you want to be. “For change to happen, we have to first discover how the change will benefit us,” Pender Greene says. “We must believe that the change is for the better. Understanding the benefits can motivate us by shifting our mindset.”
Need a little boost in positive thinking? Consider this quote from Steve Jobs, “Remembering you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. There is no reason not to follow your heart."