Change makes us vulnerable. It moves us out of our comfort zones into new and unknown worlds where the possibility of failure is real. Big changes can bring up some pretty gnarly emotions, and for me, that gnarliness manifests itself in irritation, discouragement, mild anxiety, and needless amounts of overthinking. This is when I know I need to take a time out and ask myself the following:
What do I want and why?
Becoming clear on my wants and needs helps me put change in perspective. Why do I want this change? What need does it fulfill in me? How will it help me grow and learn? How does it reward my mind, body, and spirit? The key question here is:
Is this change something that moves me toward or away from what I really want?
What is my biggest fear?
Figuring out my biggest fear around a change helps me focus on what I need to do reduce that fear. What is at the heart of my fear? Am I afraid of losing a relationship, of being ridiculed by others, of losing money, of failing? The key question here is:
What am I truly afraid of?
Whose approval am I really seeking?
One of the hardest questions I ask myself when making a change is, am I avoiding change because others won’t approve. Who are the “others” and why won’t they approve? Do I know for a fact they won’t approve or is that a story I’m telling myself? Why do I value their approval? The key question here is:
How much are the opinions of others weighing into my decision and will my change impact our relationship?
By working through these question, I’m able to at least arrive at a starting point where I can take more action toward making my change. So the next time you’re considering a big change try asking yourself these questions and see how getting clear can help you manage your fear.