Over the last few months my world has changed dramatically. I am now immersed in a totally new reality, surrounded by new opportunities and challenges.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed by it all. There are times when there is so much happening, so many new things to process, that it becomes impossible to keep up and you start tuning some of it out.
I guess it works in exactly the same way as sensory overload. If you are in an environment where there is simply too much noise and too much distraction it becomes difficult to focus and the instinct is to protect yourself by shutting down. Think of children covering their ears when they enter a noisy room and you will know what I mean.
The fact is however that we are not children. Much as we would like to, there is no running away from change. Difficult though it may be we have to deal with it.
We cannot control what life throws at us, but we CAN control how we react to it. I have written about the power of a Can-Do attitude and this also applies when it comes to navigating forks in the road. It is important to dig deep down to find the courage and the self confidence to decide which way to go and then to commit to making it work. There is no way of knowing whether the choice you made is the right one because we do not have a crystal ball so making the decision is scary, but ultimately just putting the decision off, or deciding not to decide, is a decision in itself, so you simply have to take a leap of faith.
The truth is that although change is uncomfortable, it is necessary. I do not want to live my life in suspended animation, doing the same thing day after day, following the same path for the rest of my life. I want to learn and experience new things. So whether my poor ears like it or not, I have to walk into the room and listen to the cacophony and make sense of it all.
When I made the decision to sell my company and start a new career I set the course for a total change of direction in my life. I knew that my life was going to be turned upside down and I was all for it, so I cannot claim that I did not know what I was letting myself in for.
If any of you reading this are going through rapid change or about to jump into a period of rapid change, my advice to you is to embrace it. There is no point trying to resist the tide, just go with the flow and make it work for you. There will of course be times when you will feel overwhelmed by it all but these are some coping mechanisms that I have found very helpful.
- Give the dust time to settle. When you are faced with totally new situations it helps to give yourself time to get used to what is happening and to work out how to deal with it in a positive way.
- Lean on people you trust. Asking for help and advice is not a sign of weakness. Talking things through with someone you trust can help you see things from a totally different perspective and give you the confidence to face the changes in your life.
- Find time to tune out, release some stress and recharge your batteries.
This is how I am facing the kaleidoscope of change my life has become. I am giving myself time to adapt, leaning on my husband and my friends for support and making a conscious effort to get involved in other things that are totally unrelated to my career.
Over time what was initially new and somewhat intimidating will become familiar and motivating. I am looking forward to that day.