Change “an act or process through which something becomes different.”
It’s fair to say that the real skill of an entrepreneur lies firmly in adapting to change. Whether it comes from internal or external sources the one thing that is guaranteed in business is that nothing stays the same.
But, what happens if you are struggling to cope with the regular changes? What happens when you just get used to doing one thing and then something else alters? What if you, your business, your target audience, the government or life become different somehow?
How do you embrace and thrive when you don’t know what’s going to be different this time tomorrow?
Do you always pick the same thing at restaurants, return to the same holiday destinations year on year and buy multi packs of the same underwear whenever the time comes? Do you get frustrated when your supermarket changes up it’s aisles or turn the air blue when there are roadworks because you’ve timed your journey down to the enth degree?
Or are you like me, do you pride yourself on your ability to adapt to change, have a mantra that says ‘It is what it is, now what?’
Accepting that change is inevitable will be as fundamental to your success as having a stellar product or service but it’s not easy. Everything is fluid these days and you shouldn’t count yourself out just because you like things a certain way.
So how do you learn to adapt to change well? I have a free printable mantra here and it comes with my top 5 physical things to do when you’re feeling anxious by change. It’s something that you can use to remind yourself as many times a day as you need that change is ok and that you can deal with it. I know, it’s more woo woo than I normally would share but there are scientific base to repetition and having self belief.
The most important step to any of this is to be aware that ‘change is inevitable’. If you have one phrase that you say to yourself on the regular, this should be it. Oh it’s fabulous to look yourself in the mirror and tell yourself “I am smart and capable and today is going to be a good day” but how often have you tried this and then bam, something beyond your control happens that day and you’ve forgotten all that and become frustrated and tightly wound, hardly the emotional traits required for a successful day.
Mastering the shoulder shrug when something unexpected happens will build a foundation where learning to love and appreciate yourself isn’t so fragile.
My challenge to you is to go against your instincts next time something changes. Instead of grasping desperately to control, instead of feverishly trying to figure out what happened, analysing it beyond recognition and then being angry, worried and fed up I want you to take a deep breath, plaster a smile on your face shrug your shoulders and say, “Oh, ok. What’s next”
So you’re late for an appointment? Well you can’t unblock the traffic or rewind the child on the go slow who just didn’t want to get dressed this morning or undo the emergency poo that nerves created that delayed you way more than you’d have liked. Not this time, you can’t plan or change what has happened.
So you’re going to be late. Eurgh. Time for a deep breath, a smile on your face and a shoulder shrug. What next?
By doing this you have given yourself some breathing room to not be perfect. By accepting ‘it is what it is’ means that you can look at putting things in place to reduce future occurrences but mostly you can now look at the ‘thing’ for what it really is and deal with it. So you will call your appointment, let them know you’re running late, apologise and you’ve been respectful of the other party because you have let them know what’s occurring with as much notice as possible. What you haven’t done, is kicked yourself whilst your down making things feel 10 x worse, you haven’t tried to rush, making mistakes and getting flustered along the way and shouting at the kids and forgetting to call the other person all in the hopes that you can pull back that 20 minute delay. Ending up sweaty, frustrated and lacking in confidence.
It’s not always easy – I can tell you my first instinct is always to baulk against the change. Every. Single. Time. and I have to make the choice to breath them in, smile in the face of them, accept them with a shrug and move forward by asking myself what’s next.
On a personal note I use those physical queues because I find it helps shift my mind to the dynamic I need, it’s simply a way to disrupt an unhealthy or useless pattern of thought. You can use other methods but these are the ones I can do anywhere anytime and I find them helpful.
Change is inevitable but it can be difficult to deal with, creating anxiety and making it tough to break through the negativity that can come with it. If you want to start learning how to manage your response to change to embrace the future of your business then you can get my free printable mantra and 5 top things to do when you’re worrying about changes right here.