As a coach, I am someone that is supposed to have her act together and support others with their struggles, but recently, my own ability to accept change and move through fear was put into test.
This is how my test began.
“I want to sell the house,” my husband said very casually during dinner one night.
“What? This house? What? Why?” I replied in shock.
The weeks that followed this casual announcement were pure hell. We fought, I cried, I pleaded, and I experienced what seemed like every possible emotion from sadness to anger, then to depression and anything in between. You see, I mostly made my decision based on my heart, and all of the logic my husband was giving to me made absolutely no sense to my heart. We were talking in two different languages. His reasoning was all logical, and mine all emotional. Neither of us could convince the other. It felt as if I had hit a dead end.
After all, this was the house that my kids grew up in; this was the house that hosted our ritual Thanksgivings; this was the house that was the hub for our family and friends’ gatherings. This “happy” house was the home of many beautiful memories. How could I let that go?
The move was sudden and unexpected; I was shell shocked; everything was moving much faster than I could handle.
I survived, then thrived.
For me change meant the end, and the more I resisted and struggled to embrace change, the more I was presented with situations that required a drastic change.
Life has a funny way of teaching us the lessons we need to learn in order to grow emotionally and spiritually. When we fail to “get it” the first time around, life keeps repeating the message in more forceful ways until there is no way around not absorbing the lesson.
My lesson: Life is change.
Allow change to present itself as an opportunity, allow it to be the beginning of better things to come. Change is an evitable part of life; we can either resist it or welcome it.
Life is our persistent teacher. My own resistance caused me to learn this lesson the hard way!
No matter how much I wanted to keep things as they were, universe had better and bigger plans for me.
Here are some lessons I learned from resisting and then embracing change.
- Be flexible- Be adaptable and see things from a different perspective. Allow yourself to ask, what more is there that I don’t see at this moment? How can I change my thought and be accepting to what is to come? Being flexible leads to more opportunities, and ultimately leads to growth. Take risks and be open to not knowing all the steps before they come. Be aware of your language, “I shouldn’t”, “I can’t”, “ I won’t”, … are all red flag words that indicates rigidity. Instead try using “let’s see”, “maybe”, and “it’s possible”. Be expansive rather than limited in possibilities.
- Reduce expectation- We all have certain expectation for how things should be. Having an outcome and a goal in mind is excellent, and it motivates us to move forward. However, not being attached to the results is what matters the most. Know what you want, do your best to get it and let go of the rest. Turn the anxious feeling of uncertainty into feelings of excitement. Remember, you are not doing something wrong, you are only trying something new.
- Move through fear- Change can be scary. Navigating between “what was”, “what is”, and “what is next” can be stressful and anxiety provoking, to say the least. The only way through fear, is through it. Accept the unknown and dive into the uncertainty. Remember, everything better and fulfilling lies on the other side of fear.
- Recognize the strength- By accepting change, embracing the unknown, and learning the lesson, we strengthen our emotional and mental muscles. We learn how to ride the ups and downs of life with flow, ease, and confidence. Change allows you to grow. Each new experience, new lesson, and new way of being strengthen the emotional and mental muscles.
- Live in the moment- Allow yourself to go through the emotions and to experience what you are going through at the moment both internally and externally. Don’t deny or avoid what you are feeling. Identify them and understand what each feeling is telling you. Be fully present in the natural ebb and flow of life.
- Reframe the feeling- Alter your perspective by changing the labels you give to feelings. That anxious, butterfly in the stomach feeling can be the same sensation as an eager and joyful anticipation. Just by shifting and re-focusing our attention, we are opening up the doorways for the good that might be on our way.
The only constant in life is change. We go through changes every day whether we realize it or not; change, both inner and outer is the foundation for our journey and for our mental and emotional growth. All that we are, all that we know, all that we love is constantly changing and new possibilities and opportunities are unfolding at every given moment of our lives.
Be aligned with this truth and allow change to guide you through that which is yet to come.
Embrace the change, release the old with grace, and welcome the new with excitement.