By Wendy Mednick
A year of change and the stories we tell ourselves…..
Darwin once said,”Change is there anything more uncomfortable? We are creatures of habit set in our ways to a fault. It is not the strongest that survive, but are the most intelligent. It’s the one that's most adaptable to change, and how we adapt to it is the real test. So, we can either stand still when everything around us evolves or we can choose to move with them.
The past year 2020 brought about unexpected change for most. We had no choice but to conform in order to survive, we had to step out of our comfort zone. How could we not, we were all and, are continuing to feel the pain associated with a world crisis, a Pandemic. So many when asked about their thoughts as the year was coming to an end stated, “I am ready to kick this year to the curb”. We told ourselves stories that this world crisis will not last long and that life will be “Normal” again soon. Perhaps it is because change is so uncomfortable that it is easier to believe the stories we tell ourselves. This year of change will teach us it is better to be prepared for change because we have more control over how we react to it. The year of change came into our lives as a result of a crisis, it did not come in as a result of choice or by chance. If we tell ourselves the story that all is well and we are unprepared, and you resist the change in front of you, then you have no control or choice as to how you want to live your life. Adapting to how to live with change during this world Pandemic is one example.
John F. Kennedy stated, “ Change is the law of life”. Those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future”. We are surrounded by change and it is the one thing that has the most dramatic impact on our lives. There is no avoiding it, as it will find you, challenge you and force you to reconsider how to live your life. As this new year is now upon us, reflect back on how you will be able to adjust yourself to the changes that were brought upon us due to the Pandemic. Remember, we want our lives to heal and thrive by change, not chance.
Our minds can be a powerful tool for us. We either allow the stories that creep in to be true, or we accept the reality of what is happening around us. When we allow ourselves to become anxious, the stories in our head grow stronger and longer. The key is to take the power back and stop the story before it starts. A New Year's resolution is a tradition, most commonly in the Western Hemisphere, in which a person resolves to continue good practices, change an undesired trait or practice, to accomplish a personal goal or otherwise improve their life. This new year's resolution, or maybe the story we tell ourselves, gives people something to look forward to as well as to keep working towards. Even if it is not followed through completely, making a resolution at least shows that you have the belief and hope in your ability to change habits and become a better you.
Author & Playwright George Bernard Shaw stated,” Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything”. The stories we tell ourselves have to be realistic, there have to be key steps to enable you to adapt and then successfully manage the change in your life. Focus on living a balanced and healthy life, keeping your body in good health keeps your mind strong and clear. Healthy lifestyle actions include a healthy diet, exercise, adequate sleep. These actions will help you to successfully manage change when it comes into your life. Finding positive ways to deal with stress and the daily pressures we face is the key to your survival on both a physical and emotional level. Change your mindset, by changing your story that you tell yourself. As I stated earlier, we live our lives in our own comfort zone, why, because it is familiar and it is comfortable. Embracing change requires one to step into the unknown, our subconscious does not like the unknown. Our mind then tells us to resist and that is when we start our own story how not to conform. It is your power choice to change your own mindset, and enable yourself to activate positive change in your life.
Author, Roy T. Bennett stated,” Comfort Zones, where your unrealized dreams are buried, are the enemies of achievement. Leadership begins when you step outside the zone”. When you realize what is important in life it then gives you purpose, helps to set a direction in life for you. It allows you to have a bit more clarity as well as focus, helping you to manage the impact of change.The story one needs to tell themself is how to step out of that comfort level, although it is scary, in reality it is the unknown for most. Get familiar with how to do that, make a list, train your brain,train the subconscious into believing that scary actions are normal for us to do. Learning new skills helps one to be more adaptable in new situations. Secondly, it also encourages us to be more creative and innovative in our thinking thus becoming more comfortable with the unknowns.
We all desire to live happy, long and successful lives. Embrace change and it will embrace you. Tell yourself a positive story. One that is proactive about how we manage the change we are facing in our lives. The negative changes that most had to endure in the year 2020 can be looked upon as how we were able to do it. Perhaps because we were all doing it together. Convert that change into how it was overcome and survival for yourself, you became stronger for it. One can revert back to these difficult times knowing how much was overcome during turbulent times. It is so important to learn how to become adaptable and resilient, it will create success for you when change is upon us. You have a choice to make as to how you want to accept change in your life. Choice, accept it or tell yourself a different story and stay stuck. Embrace this new year of 2021 with joy and happiness, You survived 2020 and have your own story to tell!
Stay Well, Stay Happy
Wendy Mednick was born and raised in BUffalo, N.Y. and holds a BS/MA from SUNY@ Buffalo/SUC@Buffalo. Owner WFM Development with 30 years plus experience in sales, business development and project management, as well as active in the not for profit community. She can be reached at wfm662@ gmail.com.