Your Wellbeing – Accepting change is vital to your health and happiness
This content has been adapted from Morneau Shepell's workhealthlife.com, part of the CDSPI Members' Assistance Program (MAP). MAP is available to you, your family and team member.
Access their website here.
Have you ever heard the old adage “the only constant in life is change”? It is one of the truest statements there is: change is inevitable, it happens to everyone, and it will happen again and again and again. Though change may be constant, for many people, managing change remains one of the most difficult challenges of day-to-day life; we prefer the known over the uncertain. Accepting change and building resilience are fundamental to good mental health.
Change comes in all forms and in all areas of life: personal and professional relationships begin and end, you start a new job, your family moves, loved ones die, you have children, you report to a new boss, new workplace protocols are introduced, and so on. Even positive change, can be difficult to adapt to. Some changes in our personal or work life can ask so much from us that the impact can lead to depression or anxiety. However, proactive resilience building can make change less frightening and a more fulfilling prospect.
Here are some building blocks for a resilient self that will help you be more flexible and prepared for change:
1. Foster radical acceptance
Radical acceptance is a psychological tool that teaches us that while change can be painful, it is resisting change through the negative stories we tell ourselves, such as “this isn’t fair” or “I can’t get through this” that causes real suffering. Reality is the way it is and if we can’t change it, accepting it is really our only choice.
2. Put effort into nurturing friendships
When change happens, we rely on the people around us to help us move through difficult times. Make and maintain strong connections with friends and family members. Not only does this allow for mutual support, but it also helps to remind you of your true self regardless of changes happening around you.
3. Make a resilience plan
When a big change comes your way, be prepared. A resilience plan should involve financial considerations like allotting part of your savings that is specifically for unexpected changes. It should also include self-care strategies and people you can call when you need to talk about how you are feeling and what may come next.
4. See change as a virtue
Certainly, some changes are painful, even devastating but fortunately change also means opportunity for growth. By actively seeking change in the form of self-improvement and personal growth you will increase your resilience. Build positive change into your life by pursuing continuing education, setting new personal goals, and taking up new interests.
Increasing your resilience does not mean you will be insensitive or unaffected by change, only that you won’t be loose your balance or feel incapacitated to take action. People who practice radical acceptance still experience grief and the emotional impact of change and loss, but are able to move through these states and maintain positive mental health.
Including the tips above in your day-to-day life will help you be prepared for change and be ready to make the best of it when it happens.
Email us if you have questions, suggestion, or feedback.
CDA Oasis Team