How To Deal With Change

change-signThroughout our lives there is one constant: the inescapable fact that things change. Whether personal or professional changes come in all shapes and sizes from the big, sudden life events to the slow creep of age. How we deal with these changes will determine how we feel about ourselves and life in general.

Anticipate, monitor and adapt

People have a tendency to gravitate to the familiar and the safe. We cling to known quantities in life and often find we fear change. This is often an irrational fear, but nonetheless we have an innate tendency to fear the unknown. The first step to overcoming such fear is to identify the factors which may lead to a change and plan for them. By encouraging flexibility of mind and avoiding the rigidity of the status quo, we can ensure we do not overestimate the threat that change poses while simultaneously underestimating our resource for coping with that change.

One step at a time

Taking a change all at once may seem overwhelming, but often we can break the change into smaller aspects which are less daunting to deal with. Once we see a path to follow we can assess the resources and assistance we need to deal with it. We can put this in place long before any changes are on the horizon, helping maintain quality of life, so that when faced with change we are not overwhelmed. This can be achieved in various ways:

  • Friendships and our social network. Developing new interests and maintaining existing ones.
  • Health. Maintaining a healthy body with a balanced diet and allowing time to relax and sleep.
  • Open Mind. Be objective and look at the facts rather than assuming the consequences of change will be detrimental – often the opposite is true.
  • Gather Information. Fear of the unknown can lead to stress; knowledge reduces uncertainty, builds hope, and prepares us for the future.
  • Gradually build change. Big changes that hit all at once consume all our time and energy, and can be overwhelming, lead to depression, and cause anxiety. Break down change into smaller manageable pieces.
  • Talk. The key to being a great Life Coach is the ability to listen and develop a relationship with clients; building trust so they are comfortable sharing their fears and concerns. Being open, honest and sharing our feelings is the first step towards finding a solution.
  • Sense of Humour. Laughter – taking the seriousness out of a situation – releases pent-up energy, and chemicals within our body which help to reduce stress.
  • Journaling. Keeping a journal has a similar effect to talking. It is something we can look back at when facing new challenges, and helps to bridge the gap between sessions when we have no-one on hand to talk to.

A Positive Outcome

As a life coach, you are in the position to have a positive impact on your clients by helping them to deal with the changes they face. You can give them the knowledge and skills, which instil self-confidence, helping them to anticipate, monitor and adapt to those changes.

With your help your clients will be able to take charge and be proactive rather than reactive. This fosters a positive attitude, through which it is possible to create and welcome change as opposed to becoming a victim of transition.

Whether you are just starting out as a life coach or you want to develop your skills further to help your clients who are faced with life or professional changes, the courses we have on offer at The Life Coaching College are designed to help you help your clients

Glen James Murdoch

Glen Murdoch is the founder and CEO of The Life Coaching College. He has a long history of working with Athletes and Teams as a Performance Coach and Analyst and has developed Australia's number 1 Life Coaching Program - The Advanced Diploma in Coaching.