Embracing Change

June 11, 2012 13 Comments TAGS: Career, Stress

Embracing change is never easy. We as a people, are not by nature, adaptive to change. Why? Change means ‘new.’ Change involves the unknown. Change means breaking comfortable patterns. Change involves going outside our comfort zone. We can fight change, we can try to avoid it, but change happens. And while change can come as a huge relief if we’ve just moved past a bad chapter in our lives, change can also be very scary. It involves tremendous risk, and puts us outside our comfort zone. But here’s what’s true– you make the choice about how you’re going to respond to change. You hold the power.

 

I underwent a name change on Twitter last week. It was a big step. I went from @WomenOnTheFence to @EricaDiamond. As you know, Twitter is my playground. I am on Twitter… A LOT. I sat on the fence for months until I actually did it. In fact, I am still trying to digest the new name change and it has not been an easy transition. It meant me stepping out with my name, and declaring that my personal name, is part of the Women On The Fence brand. It was a risky move. But I decided to make the change because many of the @WomenOnTheFence tweets are my own personal tweets, and I felt that it was more authentic if people saw and connected with the person behind the Women On The Fence Twitter profile. For the most part, people have responded positively and embraced it, and said that they feel like they are talking TO someone now.

But I also got a few comments like, “Oh, so now you’re branding Erica Diamond? What about Women On The Fence?” And I wasn’t sure if it was my fans who were afraid of the change, or me. I second-guessed my change. Nothing at all has changed. This blog was, is, and will always be about Real Inspiration for the Modern Woman. About helping women get off the fence, and live a better life. The thing is, we just don’t like change. Change makes us uncomfortable.

But change is so often necessary to grow. And sometimes we don’t choose change, but change chooses us. Sometimes, we don’t have a choice but to change. Perhaps you have been fired from your job, perhaps your partner has left you, perhaps you received a rejection letter for something you wanted. If you are experiencing a situation whereby you’ve been left with no choice but to accept change, hopefully these tips will help you go with the current, instead of trying to swimming upstream.

  • Understand that change will ALWAYS involve some loss- mourn the loss and look for the lesson. Even change in happy situations involves a loss- when you get married, you gain a wonderful partner, but you lose some of your freedom. When you get promoted in your career, you may get a better and higher paying job, but you lose the comfort of your old position. Change means loss- the sooner you can mourn it, be resilient and move on, the better.
  • Develop the attitude that your “thoughts” create your “reality.” It’s a bit of an overused concept, but it is true. If you approach change with negative thoughts, negative energy, and negative emotions, your situation will most likely have a negative outcome.
  • Let go. Welcome the change. Believe that things happen for a reason, and if the change is a negative one, believe it brings a gift. Find the gift. The change has come upon you to learn a lesson. Find the lesson, and learn from it. When I did not get into MBA School, I was devastated. I thought my life was over. So, I took another road. And the outcome has been wonderful even though I couldn’t see it at the time.
  • Practice living in the moment. I learned about the power of living in the moment in great detail recently at Canyon Ranch. If you let your thoughts wander to past moments or future times, you won’t have the coping skills to face the change. You will feel totally overwhelmed. So deal with today, today! It will all seem a lot less scary.

So my friends, let the old bad habits die. Let what no longer works for you fade away. Then, help usher in the birth of WHAT’S NEXT, of what’s to come, before that too, becomes only a memory. Change is an opportunity for growth and positivity- even if it doesn’t come neatly packaged in a bow.

Ladies, tell us, how do you embrace change? Are you good at accepting change, or does change scare you?

And finally, to Robin Roberts, host of Good Morning America, and my Twitter friend whom I correspond, I am sending you my love, prayers and strength for a speedy recovery. You will be beat this – you have so much support, and we are standing by your side.

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xoxEDxox

    13 Comments

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    2. Joyce Halladay says:

      Change we must! It is an illusion that anything can, should or does remain the same! We humans were designed for change! It saddens me to watch people clinging to ways of being, a job, a behaviour, a relationship, that sucks the life out of them. I am not talking about irresponsibility, I am talking about living, well! Congratulation ‘s for taking a risk and making a change. Embrace it!

    3. I understand what is behind your change…you are the brand, women on the fence!!
      good luck – making it through a transition always makes us stronger.

    4. I can understand exactly what you’re going through. I recently went from using a pen name to my real name and I have to say it was the best thing I could have done. Yet I agonized about it for a week before making the change. And I finally realized it was fear causing me the agony and decided to tackle it. The most gratifying part? The day I did it I had 15 new followers. And my following continues to grow. I also feel more free to express myself as I really am. Hiding behind a pen name was limiting my normal enthusiastic personality and I didn’t even realize it! Good for you for embracing the change and sharing the lessons you learned!

    5. Christine says:

      Like many, I have never been great at accepting change. However, I have always felt that knowing I have issues with change has helped me to work harder to prepare myself to adjust to it. I probably prepare more for changes coming into my life than anyone else as I know this can help me adjust… It’s the knowing change is hard that is key!

    6. Two years ago, I faced an enormous change. I left behind my comfy suburban life to teach at an international school in Bangalore, India. I anticipated not seeing my husband for a short while. Little did I know that it would be months before I would see him again. Like Cathy I relied on the serenity prayer as well as being flexible. I feel fortunate that I had such a unique experience at a time when most middle aged women would prefer not to be challenged. My outlook on life has forever been altered.

    7. Cathy says:

      Six years ago, I went through a lot of changes in my life and I was so overwhelmed that I did not know what to do. An angel then cross my path and told me about the Serenity prayer:

      “God grant me the serenity
      to accept the things I cannot change;
      courage to change the things I can;
      and wisdom to know the difference. ”

      The prayer is longer but this paragraph was a revelation for me. I look at it everyday and I found that I am less reluctant to the changes in my life as I am now able to embrace them

      Have a great day Erica xxx

    8. Anita says:

      I know exactly what you’re talking about, just went through a similar experience! Thanks as always for the great info,

    9. I’m a big believer in the words of Sheryl Crow – “Change will do you good!” It’s not always easy to embrace, but getting out of one’s comfort zone and embracing change can be illuminating.

      So sorry to hear about Robin Roberts. She seems to be such a role model for women and men alike.

    10. Theresa says:

      Great article.

    11. Felicia says:

      I’m no good with change either. I get uncomfortable with change and I’m a big creature of habit.

    12. Vanessa H says:

      Sadly I am terrible at accepting change.

      • I myself and not great at embracing or accepting change. It is something I work on daily. I like what I know, I like to do it again and again- it feels comfortable. The challenge is to move with the times, venture outside our comfort zones. I am a work in progress here too. 😉

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