Change is one of the few constants of life. Many people detest change while some embrace it, it all comes down to how you are wired to deal with it and the reference and experience you associate with it. Change makes us feel uneasy as it takes us into the unknown and moves us away from things we may be certain of. Change is needed and imperative in life as I really believe change equates to growth, new learnings and possibilities.
If there wasn’t supposed to be change there wouldn’t’ be butterflies.
Change can come in the form of innovation, creation and new ways and affects us at both a professional and personal level. The most successful leaders and business owners I work with embrace unknown change and take risks to grow.
They don't stay with what is comfortable, a trap that is easy to fall into. My gauge of being out of my comfort zone is this:
Do I feel excited and slightly stressed (in a good way)?
Is my why to change exceeding my why to stay the same?
Am I sure of the desired outcome and why I want this?
I reckon we fall into one of these 4 change patterns:
- Defiant: this is where we resist known change
- Fearful: this is where we resist unknown change and usually don't understand the motivation behind it
- Comfortable: this is where we embrace known change, it’s safe and don't really have or know a reason to embrace what is unknown
- Brave: Embracing unknown change and taking a risk to do so
I personally love change and embracing the unknown.
A few key things that help me deal with constant business, market, client and personal changes I face daily are:
Knowing the reason and the why for change
- Make sure change is for the right reason especially when it is influenced by you
- Don’t do “change’ in overdrive for the sake of it. It’s easy to sometimes create change if things seem to plateau out
Focus on what isn’t changing
- Sometimes too much change can seem overwhelming
- When dealing with change it helps to focus on a few things that aren’t changing so you have a measure of stability around certain things to help you deal with what is changing
- Look at things that are stable in your life such as certain people in, your health routine and so on
Know what lights you up
- Tap into the things that motivate you and make you feel alive
Be excited by change and what could be
- Change can generate infinite possibilities and growth
Don't be nervous or anxious and “awfulise” what could go wrong
- Reframe the situation by being excited, lose the words nervous/anxious
- Think about what could go right
- Reference back to a positive change you have experienced
“When dealing with change it helps to focus on a few things that aren’t changing so you have a measure of stability around certain things to help you deal with what is changing”
Embracing the unknown is a game-changer. As someone who left the corporate world after 12 years to pursue a business 11 years ago, if I had doubted myself, lost direction or given up I wouldn't be writing this article right now and living a life that I love.
I’d love to hear your tips on embracing unknown change and what works for you!
To change and beyond!