Don't Be Afraid of Change

Photo of Marci Marra

iStock 95978189 SMALLChange is good. There is nothing more constant than change. It is happening all around us, every day, all of the time, all our lives. But why do we fear change? For one, it’s often hard, even physically painful, and it makes us uncomfortable while we are adjusting to it.

Change can be a beautiful thing – exciting, even – yet it is one aspect of life many people resist. Why do some people easily embrace change, while others do everything in their power to prevent it? Do you see the glass half empty or half full? It’s all a matter of perspective. 

Alter the perspective by changing the labels we use to identify our feelings. We can re-interpret our feelings of anxiety as butterflies that come from anticipating something special. If we shift our perspective to look for positivity, we can disrupt the negative thoughts and recognize there may be good ahead, which means we can focus our energy on moving through the change with an open mind.

The ability to go from resisting and fearing change to embracing change is possible. It is, however, a journey and it will take time and concentration. Remember, change is hard, and as uncomfortable as it might be, the status quo can be much more uncomfortable in the long run.

We can choose to change with the times, take advantage of new opportunities and grow, or we can fight the changes, refuse to adapt, and watch ourselves stagnate. Learning to accept change, or even to embrace it, can be helpful for successfully navigating it. There is always something valuable that can be derived out of difficulty, adversity, or change; we just have to allow ourselves to be vulnerable to see it. A recent study found that firms skilled in agility generate 30% higher profits than less agile competitors.

So the next time you are faced with an experience that causes your reality to change, take a deep breath, take a step back, and embrace the opportunity.