Change is part of life. In fact, it’s what life is made of.
From the moment we are born into this world, we’re changing... and the world and our relationships are changing around us. The degree to which we embrace change is the degree to which we can embrace life.
But change can also be scary, especially when it comes fast or intensely. Our routines, habits and the things we can count on bring us comfort and security.
Often, when things change around us really quickly, we find ourselves feeling unmoored or anxious. When anxiety kicks in, we’re less open to change—which can create a vicious cycle.
So, that leaves us with a question: In times of great change—whether a career shift, retirement, divorce, new partnership, moving our home, or even just moving into a new phase of life—what can we do to embrace change while still feeling grounded and secure?
Here are a few things I’ve found that can help you stay centered when everything is changing all around us...
1. Remember change comes in cycles.
In the midst of a big change, it can be easy to feel like the upheaval will go on forever. But that’s never the case.
Change comes in cycles. There’s a big upheaval, then we settle into a new normal. Soon, that new normal feels as secure and familiar as the old one did—and often, if we play our cards right, it can even feel better.
As human beings, it’s in our nature to create routines, habits and structures. We do it intuitively. You can trust your ability to create and settle into new routines once the dust settles. If you mindfully create those routines with an eye toward wellness, you can also trust those new routines could wind up feeling better than the old ones did.
2. Cultivate resilience.
There’s no doubt about it: big change is stressful.
No matter how adaptable we are, adjusting to new changes uses extra energy, and that can tax our systems. But we can bounce back from that stress—and our ability to do so is based on our resilience.
The good news? Resilience acts like a muscle—and like any muscle, it can be trained and strengthened. When we cultivate gratitude, reach out to resources like close friends, coaches, teachers and therapists, practice self-care and get enough sleep, we are increasing our resilience.
Daily, small practices that increase resilience add up—so it becomes easier to “bounce back.” The next time a wave of change comes, we are better adapted to adjust to it.
3. Take care of your body.
No matter what is happening around us, we are still living in our first homes—our bodies.
Being at home in your body is a constant. When things change rapidly in the world around us, it can be easy to lose touch with that. But it’s also easy to remind ourselves and connect back in.
When I’m in a time of change, I try extra hard to remember to take care of myself. I drink lots of water, dance, exercise and eat enough nourishing foods. If I’m really on my game, I also remind myself to take one-minute breaks to connect to my breathing.
When there’s a lot of upheaval happening, my body is the one consistent thing I can always connect to, and that helps to ground me. If I practice treating my body with kindness, it makes everything else feel a lot less overwhelming.
What do you do to stay happy and grounded through times of change? How do you cultivate resilience? Let us know in the comments below!
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