Embracing change is never easy. We as a people, are not by nature, adaptive to change. Why? Change means ‘new.’ Change involves the unknown. Change means breaking comfortable patterns. Change involves going outside our comfort zone. We can fight change, we can try to avoid it, but change happens. And while change can come as a huge relief if we’ve just moved past a bad chapter in our lives, change can also be very scary. It involves tremendous risk, and puts us outside our comfort zone. But here’s what’s true– you make the choice about how you’re going to respond to change. You hold the power.
I underwent a name change on Twitter last week. It was a big step. I went from @WomenOnTheFence to @EricaDiamond. As you know, Twitter is my playground. I am on Twitter… A LOT. I sat on the fence for months until I actually did it. In fact, I am still trying to digest the new name change and it has not been an easy transition. It meant me stepping out with my name, and declaring that my personal name, is part of the Women On The Fence brand. It was a risky move. But I decided to make the change because many of the @WomenOnTheFence tweets are my own personal tweets, and I felt that it was more authentic if people saw and connected with the person behind the Women On The Fence Twitter profile. For the most part, people have responded positively and embraced it, and said that they feel like they are talking TO someone now.
But I also got a few comments like, “Oh, so now you’re branding Erica Diamond? What about Women On The Fence?” And I wasn’t sure if it was my fans who were afraid of the change, or me. I second-guessed my change. Nothing at all has changed. This blog was, is, and will always be about Real Inspiration for the Modern Woman. About helping women get off the fence, and live a better life. The thing is, we just don’t like change. Change makes us uncomfortable.
But change is so often necessary to grow. And sometimes we don’t choose change, but change chooses us. Sometimes, we don’t have a choice but to change. Perhaps you have been fired from your job, perhaps your partner has left you, perhaps you received a rejection letter for something you wanted. If you are experiencing a situation whereby you’ve been left with no choice but to accept change, hopefully these tips will help you go with the current, instead of trying to swimming upstream.
- Understand that change will ALWAYS involve some loss- mourn the loss and look for the lesson. Even change in happy situations involves a loss- when you get married, you gain a wonderful partner, but you lose some of your freedom. When you get promoted in your career, you may get a better and higher paying job, but you lose the comfort of your old position. Change means loss- the sooner you can mourn it, be resilient and move on, the better.
- Develop the attitude that your “thoughts” create your “reality.” It’s a bit of an overused concept, but it is true. If you approach change with negative thoughts, negative energy, and negative emotions, your situation will most likely have a negative outcome.
- Let go. Welcome the change. Believe that things happen for a reason, and if the change is a negative one, believe it brings a gift. Find the gift. The change has come upon you to learn a lesson. Find the lesson, and learn from it. When I did not get into MBA School, I was devastated. I thought my life was over. So, I took another road. And the outcome has been wonderful even though I couldn’t see it at the time.
- Practice living in the moment. I learned about the power of living in the moment in great detail recently at Canyon Ranch. If you let your thoughts wander to past moments or future times, you won’t have the coping skills to face the change. You will feel totally overwhelmed. So deal with today, today! It will all seem a lot less scary.
So my friends, let the old bad habits die. Let what no longer works for you fade away. Then, help usher in the birth of WHAT’S NEXT, of what’s to come, before that too, becomes only a memory. Change is an opportunity for growth and positivity- even if it doesn’t come neatly packaged in a bow.
Ladies, tell us, how do you embrace change? Are you good at accepting change, or does change scare you?
And finally, to Robin Roberts, host of Good Morning America, and my Twitter friend whom I correspond, I am sending you my love, prayers and strength for a speedy recovery. You will be beat this – you have so much support, and we are standing by your side.