"If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got."
As summer is slowly coming to an end, I've been doing a lot of reflecting, as always - specifically on how much has changed within this past year.
Yes, change can be scary - but it can also lead to the best learning experiences and teach us a tremendous amount about ourselves.
Let me ask you this:
Have you ever wanted to start a project, relationship, new habit? Maybe you wanted to leave a position or end a relationship? You wanted some kind of change, but you were afraid? Afraid of what could happen?
Personally, what's most terrifying to me is being in the same place my whole life - and I don't just mean geographically.
Having the same mindset or not wanting to explore and try new things. I always strive to grow - to be the best me I can be. There's SO much in this world that I have yet to learn and discover.
Unfortunately, there are fears that may keep us from embracing change. We may end up resisting what life throws at us or what we are capable of, because we don't want to face these fears.
In solo Episode 30 of TRUST & THRIVE with Tara Mont, I share some research I found on the many fears that may hold us back from embracing change.
You may have felt one or a few of these in your own life. Being aware of what may be holding you back is the first step, and THEN you can work on overcoming them.
From the Harvard Business Review, and other valid sources, I found that some of these fears may include:
Fear of the unknown/uncertainty:
"Anticipation can cause more damage than change itself."
We fear the unknown, because as humans, we like to be in control. We like to know what's coming next. For myself and others, the build up and anticipation have definitely led to anxiety.
Fear of failure:
We're all human and we make mistakes. Embrace that fact and let it motivate you, not discourage you.
Many of us grow up believing that our mistakes are "failures," when in reality, they're simply learning experiences.
Fear of inadequacy:
Just like the fear of failure, we often put this pressure on ourselves to be perfect and to get things right, right away. The truth is, we'll never know what we're capable of until we try.
If you try something and realize it's not for you, that's great! You move on to the next. It doesn't always mean you're inadequate at the job or relationship, it simply means that it's not for YOU.
Fear of being embarrassed:
How often do we keep ourselves from connecting with another individual or applying for that job, or posting that video, because we fear that others will judge us?
We so often worry about being "ridiculed" for being human. Don't let anyone make you feel down on yourself for trying or putting yourself out there. Own it and be proud of your courage.
Fear of losing control:
As humans, we come into this world wanting answers and more answers. We want to be in control and know where we're going.
When change occurs, we may feel out of control. Whether that's starting a new job or sadly losing a loved one. Sometimes we can't control what happens, but we CAN control our reaction - so that's what we need to focus on.
Fear of being happy:
"Fear of being happy? Did I read that right?" Oh yes, you did. Sounds weird, right? To be afraid of happiness and possibly success - but it's possible.
With success comes change, whether that's losing people in your life or working 100x harder. Many people want to be comfortable and that's okay! We must accept that each of us has different values. If you value stability, then you may be less likely to take risks, because who knows what the outcome will be?
If you take that chance, you may realize that you deserve better in your career, relationships, lifestyle. Embrace it.
Of course, those were just some of the common fears that many people face when struggling to embrace change. There are many other personal reasons why people do so.
With that said, there are ways to work on embracing change. First, reflect on what fears you may have.
Are you someone who likes to be in control, so maybe you've been afraid of the unknown and not having a set answer? Or maybe you're afraid of hurting your loved ones and leaving people behind if YOU grow?
At the end of the day, we must choose ourselves first. We can't hold ourselves back and avoid living our best lives to keep others content.
If anything, we all deserve loves ones that encourage us to grow and be our best selves. To embrace change and thrive.
So would you rather stay where you are forever? Or take that risk, embrace whatever comes your way and make the best out of it?
The choice is yours.