The only constant in life is change. It is everywhere and unfortunately it cannot be avoided. What you can do though is understand how it effects you and adopt strategies to respond in a way that does not impact upon your health.
Everyone responds to change differently. Some will see it as a positive and adapt quickly, while others will be left feeling overwhelmed and lost. If you are in the second group you may not realise that those negative feelings are impacting your health until it is too late.
The most common signs that change might be effecting you include: frustration, unhappiness, restlessness, discontentment, overwhelmed, exhaustion, decreased mood, and low morale. As a result, you may also find yourself feeling out of control, not being as fulfilled or no longer getting the same results as you once did.
While these signs may occur at any time, for a variety of reasons, the key to knowing if they are impacting on your health is if they are consistently present. This is why being aware of how your mind and body respond to change is important.
There are five strategies you can adopt to help manage change in your life so that you can respond in a healthy, positive way.
Strategy One: Develop Emotional Awareness
First, accept that change will happen whether you like it or not. As you work through the change event it is important to regularly check in with yourself daily and weekly as needed. What you are doing is noticing how you feel and if there tension in your body. What thoughts are going through your head?
The following questions will help you to understand what is going on for you during a change event.
💜 How am I really feeling about life at the moment?
💜 What is working really well?
💜 What has changed?
💜 What feels like it is no longer working?
💜 Does your body feel tense? Where?
💜 Do you get frequent headaches?
💜 Do you find it difficult to sleep?
You may find that journaling helps you make sense of your thoughts and feelings to guide you towards clarity,
When you are aware of how stress feels in your mind and body you can be better equipped to respond to such events. This includes noticing the language you use about yourself when you speak to family and friends. Do you use positive or negative talk?
Recognising how you refer to yourself to others can provide insight into how you are feeling from a change event.
In part two, we will look at how your values change before we delve into developing a solution mindset.
If you are experiencing any signs of depression, anxiety or suicide as a result of sudden changes in your life, it is important to seek help immediately from your doctor, psychologist or alternatively you can contact Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636.