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I think that most of us resist change to some degree and yet without it life grows stagnant and we begin to crave something fresh and new. There are times when change calls to us, whispers in our ear and yet we still resist. I don’t know about you but I’ve learnt a few times that if change is coming, looking the other way will do nothing to stop it. You just end up unprepared and that makes it a whole lot harder.
So, how do we make friends with change? This is something that I’m always working on because I find great comfort in the familiar, stepping outside of that can be a challenge for me and so i’m mindfully looking for ways to welcome change into my everyday life - want to tag along? Here’s what I’ve been doing so far and like always I’m starting with small steps...
Easier said than done, I know. But the fear of change is usually the biggest obstacle. I ask myself the simple question “what’s the worst that could happen” this often provides the perspective I need. So what if it doesn’t work out, or your ego takes a minor hit? If we thought like that about everything then we’d never dare take the first step. Just imagine what we’d miss if we spent our whole lives like that.
You’re feeling ready for a change but perhaps you’re sensing a little resistance? Take a scan of your everyday life - is there anything or anyone who is whispering in your ear that this might not be for you? If so then it’s time to have that conversation or tackle the patterns that you think will hold you back. Look for things that trigger the behaviour that you’re trying to change - it’s like if you were trying to lose weight, avoiding your local bakery or having a word with the friend that encourages you to eat more might be a good idea just until you’ve built up enough willpower to deal with the challenge.
Remember that there’s no shame in needing help. And if you can’t find it in your everyday life then head online. You can always find someone making the same changes and it’s surprising how we all face the same struggles and challenges along the way - it’s good to share. And while you’re there try offering your support to others too.
There was a time when I couldn’t do this but today I’m mindful of celebrating the milestones - even the small ones. A week of regular change is definitely something worth celebrating in my book. Try planning how you’re going to celebrate before you begin and use it as your motivation to succeed. But, be sure that it doesn’t encourage you to take two steps back - using weight as an example again, 5 days eating healthy does not give you reason to eat all you can on the weekend. Straight talking but true!
I’ll admit that last year I had to make a pretty big leap here and remove gluten from my diet which was the kind of change that couldn’t be taken in baby steps. But, so many dietary changes can be done gradually. Set your intention before you begin and set yourself some mini goals along the way. Maybe you want to reduce processed food in your diet, so start with a new recipe each week made from seasonal produce? Now I can pretty much guarantee that they won’t all be show stopping meals - as someone who prides herself on the quality of her cooking I’m having to make peace with that myself while I continue to navigate the changes. But, I’ve learnt so much already and exploring with new ingredients keeps weekly meals fresh and interesting to say the least.
Finding a fresh perspective on change doesn’t often happen overnight but like everything small daily changes can make a world of difference. And no matter how small those steps are they all work to help us reduce our fears about change and welcome new opportunities into our lives.
AUTHOR: LEANNA DOOLIN
Co – Founder of holistic skincare brand, Pure Thoughts and advocate for women finding pause in their day to breathe deeply, give thanks and reconnect to what matters. Loves early mornings, dogs and books that you can’t put down.