Change is never easy, we get comfortable with knowing how things are and what to expect. It then seems that a change happens unexpectedly and we are thrown in a whirlwind. Whether we are moving, lose a job, have a loved one die or starting a new job, both good and bad changes can cause us some distress. I hear many people say "they don't like change" or "don't handle change well." Guess what? Its going to happen! I think its important to remember that change is an inevitable part of life regardless of how we feel about it. So how can we manage change better for smoother transitions in our lives? The uncertainty can cause an increase in anxiety so its important to put some strategies into place to keep yourself calm and ready to go.
1) Remember for planned changes such a moving to a new house, time management can make things go smoother. Create a list of what needs to be done and write a plan about when you will complete these tasks. The when is the most important part. Research the area ahead of time to find where the grocery store is, where the closest gyms are and shopping areas.
2) Acknowledge that you will feel many feelings with each change and often can involve a grieving process. You may feel sad one minute, angry another and anxious the next day. Its important to allow yourself to feel those feelings and not push them away. Don't judge yourself for having these feelings accept them and tell yourself it will get easier.
3) If this is a change that you did not ask for and you are not happy about it, it can help to journal about it. You could write all the fears you have, what you will miss when the change happens and make a list of what are the good parts about this change. For example if you lost a job, maybe now it gives you time to look for a job that might be a better fit for you.
4) Take time to think about the other changes you have faced and what you did that helped you cope. Maybe when you started a new job before you took breaks to do deep breathing or found someone at the new job you felt comfortable talking too. Remind yourself that you have made it before and you can do it again!
5) Rewrite the script you tell yourself, instead of telling yourself "I don't want to do this" "I will never adjust" reframe your thoughts to "this will be difficult at first but I will adjust and it will get easier. " Sitting and complaining will only make you feel worse and more miserable.
Remember too the importance of seeking out your social supports and process how you are feeling. This can be the key to transitioning through a difficult transition.