By Amy Dee-Kristensen
In February 2003 I’d lived in Norway for nine years, I was married, I co-owned a very successful business with my husband, lived an upper income lifestyle, and was the mother of two darling little girls. In February of 2004, I was a divorced, single mother, and a non-traditional nursing student living with my parents in Mitchell, SD while I renovated a “crap” house and attended classes. (Hyo’s note – ouch, been there, but not the divorced mom part…the mountaintop to the chasm, that part, yes)
Some transformations I welcomed and some I fought hard to avoid. But whether life revisions were invited in or kicked and shoved their way into my life, change came and with it my resiliency muscle was strengthened.
People deal with transformation differently. Change pessimists usually believe that conversion is difficult and stressful. They worry about their ability to cope with life adjustments. They often believe that they are “unlucky” if change is pressed upon them. Change pessimists see no benefits to change.
Change optimists accept change as a natural part of life and they see transformations as good. They have confidence that they have the ability to deal with metamorphoses. Change optimists seek out the positives that they believe comes from even difficult change.
The good news is that you can improve your ability to change. Your resiliency muscle can be strengthened by transforming your beliefs. Beliefs, habits, and responses are like cross-country ski paths, where grooves are cut into the snow. We ski in the grooves because its’ easiest, the path is already cut but we are not required to ski in the groove. With effort, we can cut a new path. With effort you can strengthen your resiliency muscle and become a change optimist.
Recognizing your pattern of beliefs is the first step to becoming a change optimist. Examine an adjustment you are currently experiencing, then write down your beliefs about this change. Perhaps you are experiencing a lot of work related revisions and your current beliefs are “I cannot tolerate one more change!” or “All these changes are exhausting.” or “These changes are stupid and I hate them.”
Now, pretend that you are a change optimist. Transformation excites you. You feel invigorated by the challenges conversions bring. You know something good always comes from diversity and you are excited to see the growth this change will bring to your life. Exchange your negative statements about your current remodeling into positive statements such as ” I am resilient and have the ability to handle any change that comes my way.” or “Change invigorates and excites me.” or “Change is a part of life and some good comes from all change.”
Research shows that it takes between twenty-one and twenty-eight days to develop a new habit. Get out of your old groove by reciting your positive statements twice a day for the next three weeks. When confronted with a change, catch yourself slipping into the old groove, stop, and replace your old negative statements with your new positive statements.
You control your thoughts. You can decide to cut a “new groove” and become a change optimist.
Great book – Who Moved My Cheese…
Get it, read it, understand it – it will help you immensely…