Ready or not, here it comes
How to navigate change better
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Raise your hand if you love change.
Anyone? (Bueller? Bueller?*)
Now raise your hand if you’re going through some sort of change.
Ah, that’s more like it.
Transitions are tough.
Most of us dislike change, particularly when it’s thrust upon us unexpectedly. But even when we know it’s coming, we dread its arrival.
Recently, a good friend was speaking about leaving her long-time job to move on to a wonderful new opportunity. However, she was second-guessing her decision, struggling with the idea of leaving behind a role and colleagues she loved, until she made a simple but powerful mindset shift.
She said, “It’s not a loss; it’s a change.”
At that moment, it dawned on me that if my friend could come around from a place of anxiety to acceptance, perhaps we could adopt her mindset for other career changes.
Lately, it seems everyone I know is in the midst of professional moves — maybe you are too?
Your company was (or soon will be) subject to an acquisition, downsizing, or a new management team
Your nonprofit has a new board chair
You’ve been promoted to a leadership position
During a company reorganization, your department has been disbanded, and your role has been redefined
You nailed a pitch and won a new client
You’ve been in the same industry for years and are good at what you do, but you still feel like something’s missing
These examples demonstrate the “range of change” we all face during our careers. Even seemingly positive transitions can be stressful if we allow fear to plant seeds of doubt. However, each of these scenarios has the potential to be an extraordinary opportunity for growth when we step back and view our situation through a different lens.
Here are a few truths to help you better navigate change:
Change isn’t necessarily negative
As nerve-wracking as it might be, for example, to part ways with a longtime client, realize that it doesn’t have to be a bad thing. With that client gone, perhaps now you can focus your core offerings to appeal to fewer, more targeted clients. Or maybe this frees you up to try something new.
The most valuable tool in dealing with career shifts is your mindset. Reframing a situation as a change rather than a loss means accepting that things will be different (and possibly even better).️
Without change, growth is impossible
Sometimes we cling to past situations out of comfort and routine and can get caught in a rut. But there is no growth in the status quo. In our quest to better ourselves, we’ll no doubt face challenges that require us to deal with change. Use these as opportunities to spread your wings and move out of your comfort zone to help yourself evolve into the best version of yourself.
The one thing we know is constant is change
As much as we try, we can’t control (or stop) change. It’s inevitable. But we can control how we respond to it. Rather than have it throw you into a spiral of doom, you can come to view it as a chance to see new possibilities emerge. When you acknowledge and reframe your new reality with clarity, you’ll be better equipped to deal with it and use it to your advantage.
So the next time you’re faced with a transition, remind yourself that it’s not a loss; it’s a change.
And that change may be just what’s needed to move your life forward.
Speaking of moving forward, one quality that will help you do just that.
Curiosity is a strong desire to know or learn something.
But it’s so much more.
In my latest Forbes article, I share five reasons why it fuels career growth.
P.S. When I’m not writing this newsletter or reframing transitions, I’m a social media ghostwriter. (Yep, that’s a thing). I help founders, entrepreneurs, and CXOs craft their stories to communicate and connect better by magnifying their reach and impact. (Think personal branding and thought leadership.) Learn more here.
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*Please tell me you immediately understood this reference to the 1986 classic, “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.” No, really — I’d love to know if this movie is also on your can-watch-multiple-times list. (And if you’re too young to remember this one, check it out!)