How Do You Handle Change?

Vicki Voisin, ACP

Change is inevitable. It is the one constant in life and something everyone experiences. These transitions are not always easy to navigate, though, and it’s sometimes difficult to view them with optimism.

Here are five ways to see the positive in these transitions and to embrace changes as they come your way:

1. Don’t dwell on the past. There are many emotions associated with change that may keep you from moving forward. Instead of spending time stewing about what you were or what you had, focus on where you are going and what you want to be. Then devise a plan to create that future.

2. Focus on the positive. Your attitude toward the change will have a direct effect on the outcome of the process. If you concentrate on success and view change as an opportunity that exists to teach you or to lead you to something better, you’ll find it easier to make the transition. Change may lead you to something new and rewarding that you wouldn’t have had the ability to pursue before. It may lead you to new friends, a new job, or a new hobby.

3. Focus on others. Instead of spending time feeling sorry for yourself because of the changes you’re going through, focus on other people. You’ll feel better if you help someone else. You may also realize that, compared to the problems of other people, what you’re going through really isn’t so difficult after all. Do what you can to make their lives better and you’ll find you’ve made your own life better in the process.

4. Accept reality. Here’s a favorite saying: “It is what it is!” This certainly fits when you think about change. Your transition will be easier if you accept the change for what it is and understand that it’s out of your control. Try to relax and be open to possibilities. You’ll end up in a better place.

5. Surround yourself with supportive people. You may feel isolated by the transition you’re experiencing and you may think no one else can help you. Quite the contrary! Change will be easier if you let other people into your life. Look to family, friends, co-workers, spiritual leaders…anyone who will listen, encourage and support you. They’ll also help you remain in the loop, stay optimistic and hopeful.

Here are some questions to consider when you’re struggling with change:

  • What’s good about this?
  • How can I make this work for me?
  •  What does this change allow me to do that I couldn’t do before?
  • What positive results will come from this change?

Change is inevitable and usually not something you can control. What you can control is your attitude and how you allow the change to affect you. When change occurs, don’t settle for merely surviving. Instead, make the change work for you…grow and thrive!

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©2010 Vicki Voisin, Inc.

Do you want to use this article in your newsletter, ezine or Web site? You can so long as you include this entire blurb with it: Vicki Voisin, “The Paralegal Mentor”, delivers simple strategies for paralegals and other professionals to create success and satisfaction by achieving goals and determining the direction they will take their careers. Vicki spotlights resources, organizational tips, ethics issues, and other areas of continuing education to help paralegals and others reach their full potential. She publishes a weekly ezine titled Paralegal Strategies and co-hosts The Paralegal Voice, a monthly podcast produced by Legal Talk Network. More information is available at www.paralegalmentor.com