Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change. – Jim Rohn
Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future. – John F Kennedy
We cannot avoid it, and the more we resist change the tougher our life becomes. We are surrounded by change, and it is the one thing that has the most dramatic impact on our lives. There is no avoiding change as it will find you, challenge you and force you to reconsider how to live your life. Change can come into our lives as a result of a crisis, as a result of choice or just by chance. In either situation, we are all faced with having to make a choice – do we make the change or not?
I believe that it is better to be prepared for change. This way we have more control over how we react to the change. When you are unprepared and resistant to change, then you have no control or choice as to how you want to live your life. You live your life as a reactionary rather than an activator of change.
In keeping with the theme of Terrific Fitness goals and the delivery of service all us coaches do; I’m going to keep to the subject of what most of you are looking for which centres mostly on your lifestyle and health goals. But this doesn’t just limit this commentary to just that. Adaptations to changes include events and crisis we will encounter in life. Getting married, the death of a loved one, changing jobs, the birth of a child, not to mention the news of a baby and preparations before birth. No instruction manuals are given before these events occur.
Realizing, Accepting and that ‘Comfort Zone’
Most people do not fear change. They just don’t like to do it because it involves work, in involves the unknown, and the big one…is out of their ‘comfort zone’.
We all like to come home to things we are familiar with, that we have mastered and are good at, and rely on because it works for us, for me. And when a change is required, we figure why do we have too, its working fine. The number one indicator that it’s not working for you because you didn’t change, is that feeling that you got left behind, and those that made the change have begun either to break away from you or have something you don’t.
A common word becomes apparent when this happens… the change is/was INEVITABLE. The quicker you realize the change is inevitable, the instant you understand you’ve accepted that change has to occur and you begin the first steps.
Being resistant to change is natural. But there may come a time when it becomes more uncomfortable to stay the same than to move forward.
If you resist change, you may:
- Feel stagnant
- Limit your growth
- Stifle your creativity
- Reduce your chances for connection
This could translate into lost opportunities for promotions or advancements, acquiring new skill sets, job satisfaction, and healthy relationships.
Why did you Come to Terrific Fitness?
You’ve already accepted change when you walked in through that door and began with us. Most members don’t realise where they are with regards to their own body and their potential, until they realize what they are capable of. Many of you have experienced the changes within your own capabilities in exercise, sharing experiences with others, seeing the improvements of yourselves and others and testing your limits.
The coaches know the questions to ask that open up your lives to reveal your potentials and you are set to work to explore your boundaries and build confidence and meaning to make changes to step out of that ‘comfort zone’.
Find the Meaning in Life
Step out of your comfort zone. Comfort zones, where your unrealized dreams are buried, are the enemies of achievement. Leadership begins when you step outside your comfort zone – Roy T Bennett.
Knowing what is important in your life gives you purpose and sets the direction of how you want to live your life. With a sense of purpose and meaning in life, you have clarity and focus. Both these elements are essential to you being able to successfully adapt and manage the impact of change in your life. Having no purpose or meaning means that you tend to drift in life within the confines of your comfort zone. Purpose and meaning in life gives you the courage to step out of your comfort zone – which is where you will find change and the opportunities it can offer to you.
The healthy living, self-care, and exercise components encompass the physical world of your life and is perhaps the most manageable aspect of your life. The emotional and mental part is a bit more difficult. Hence, this is the primary reason why the coaches at Terrific Fitness emphasize the important of every class attendance. Why we check in on you if you haven’t turned up and hit on you to come to the next class and continuously post pics and vids of those in the action to get you along. That physical excursion and build is a contributing factor to the emotional and mental release that incrementally is going to aid you in the bigger ticket items of your changes.
To keep the body in good health is a duty…otherwise we shall not be able to keep the mind strong and clear – Buddha
Let go your Regrets
The truth is, unless you let go, unless you forgive yourself, unless you forgive the situation, unless you realize that the situation is over, you cannot move forward
– Steve Maraboli
Regrets have a huge impact on how you respond to change, and they hold you back in life. Letting go of your regrets is key to you being able to move forward in life. It is the events of change that present opportunities in life, so if you are looking back at your past, you may miss the opportunities of the present and the future.
Two Key Elements in Change; Adaptability and Flexibility
We’ve already mentioned adaptability with key words such as realization, acceptance, inevitability. Flexibility is being able to adjust to circumstances of the process, time is a good example, the weather is going to get colder. The more you become flexible to these circumstances the better you will cope and become resilient in order to achieve a certain goal being short or long term. No better example than in winter, get out there, tough it out through the first 5 minutes and then you’re warmed up and you’re glad you turned up. This is a habit in practice on many levels.
If something negatively challenges your goal or event or circumstance, then find a positive meaning. One of the best sayings I use from a famous coach:
If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change – Wayne Dyer.
Place a Positive Attitude
While it may seem Pollyanna-ish, putting on a positive face while enduring the worst of challenges can often soften their sting. The benefits of positive psychology have long been documented, but it’s clear that positivity can serve as a balm when faced with stressful change. During a transition, remember to keep your mind open to new possibilities that carry the promise of a positive outcome.
Pay Attention to What you can Control
When you’re in the midst of a change, the feeling of having no control can often emerge.
Cognitive restructuring, or changing your negative thoughts, is a useful way to help you accept what is out of your control. The trick is to maximize the value of adjusting to new environments rather than desperately clinging to familiarity.
Here are some examples:
Change (out of our control) – Now that we’ve broken up, I don’t know who I am anymore VS
Cognitive restructuring (in our control) – Now I have the capacity to discover new interests and reconnect with old friends.
Change (out of our control) – This company takeover is screwing up my entire workflow VS
Cognitive restructuring (in our control) – I’m learning new programs and expanding my skill set. Soon I’ll qualify for a better-paying role.
Change (out of our control) – If I had of noticed that bump earlier, fido would still be here VS
Cognitive restructuring (in our control) – I had no way of knowing my dad had cancer. He would be so proud of me for how strong I’ve become.
Practice Good Self-Care
The anxiety and stressors that often surround change can have a direct impact on our bodies and emotional state. Our mental well-being can suffer.
Some self-care practices may include:
- Warm bath
- A massage
- Nature walks
- Regular exercise
- Adequate sleep
- Healthy eating
- Stress management and release techniques
- Crafts or puzzles
- Socializing and connecting with others
A well-rested and balanced body can better handle the roller coaster of ups and downs that come with change and subsequent transitions.
Accept the Change
Change impacts all of us differently. Some can easily ride the waves of change while others go kicking and screaming. Wherever you stand on this spectrum, remember that you ultimately have one goal, acceptance. Be self-aware and understand how change can affect you physically, emotionally, and mentally. With time, you can utilize these strategies to befriend change and make it your ally as you encounter the natural changing circumstances of life