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OT - Everyone Wednesday

Aniki's picture

I usually do Women Wednesday, but this topic is for everyone. Major's recent blog gave me the idea. (Thank you, Major!!)

FEAR OF CHANGE

We all have reasons why we fear change. It’s annoying, overwhelming, frustrating, unnecessary, time-consuming, and so on. Let’s DIG. Dig deeper than the circumstance, deeper than your reaction to the circumstance, DIG into the real reasons we’re afraid of change, whether it’s frustration over process changes or overwhelm over a change in career or fear of a change within ourselves or our lives.

Change is the only constant in life .So anytime we’re fighting with reality; we get to ask ourselves some deeper questions. Like what am I really afraid of here?

Beneath the situation (the things you can see or describe), beneath your reactions… are the fears that are being triggered. Remember, no “thing” in life can rub a sore spot that doesn’t already exist inside of us.

Which one of these is you?

CHANGE MAKES ME ANXIOUS
A YUGE reason we fear change is because we feel more comfortable where we are, rather than moving forward. But all of life moves forward and is changed. So if we’re afraid of doing what comes naturally and organic to our nature, it's often because of fear that change is not safe. We know how things are not but we don’t know what lies ahead. It doesn’t matter if it’s a little change – like your favorite restaurant closing – or a big change – like marriage and skids – walking into the unknown rubs against a fear that we are inherently not safe.
Ask yourself: Why do I feel unsafe?

 

CHANGE FRUSTRATES OR OVERWHELMS ME
We’re human (well, most of us…). We make mistakes. And we have weaknesses. But we’ve been taught from a very young age that this is a bad thing. So we begin to learn that we are not “good enough”… or some variation, such as smart enough, capable enough, strong enough. When change rubs against this idea we’ve learned we say things like “I can’t possibly figure out all these new changes!” or “I can’t handle this in my life.” Change freaks us out because it threatens to expose our weaknesses and our vulnerabilities.
Ask yourself: What makes me think I’m not enough?

 

IT’S JUST TOO MUCH
Too much of one thing really means not enough of another. This other “not enough“ is all about scarcity on a deep core level. We often hear it in regards to time: “I don’t have time to manage all this.” Sometimes it’s about money: “I can’t afford to redo everything!” Maybe even: “I don’t have the energy for this.! The thing about scarcity is it’s really about us and our (in)ability to create more, which goes back to that “good enough” thing mentioned above. It’s also about the feeling that your needs won’t be met, that if someone else gets something there won’t be anything left for you, that you’ll be left hurting or alone.
Ask yourself: Why do I think I can’t have or create more?

 

WHAT ABOUT ME AND WHAT I WANT
This one is sneaky and sometimes hard to see. Maybe it surfaces as the “Why me? Everyone is out to get me!” reaction we have when things change without our approval. But it’s also that anxiety we feel as we try to figure something out and feel like we’ll be the last one to get it (or that we’ll never get it!). Or the panic we feel if life or love gets tough, because we’re afraid it won’t work out. You see, under this idea that people are intentionally hurting you or will hurt you is really the idea that you are or will be alone, unloved, unseen, unheard, not cared for or taken seriously, ignored, unimportant or unappreciated.
Ask yourself: How long have I felt alone?

 

OR maybe it’s something else entirely…
Have you caught yourself wrapped up in reacting badly about something, complaining about change that you know really doesn’t matter? Well, then it’s likely it’s not about what’s changing at all. It may be that the change you’re resisting is really just a scapegoat for something else.
Ask yourself: What am I really avoiding or distracting myself from by spending my energy fighting this?

 

So NOW what??

Once you’ve done the Ask yourself introspection and identified the reasons for your feelings about change, then examine what positive steps you can take to allay the fears surrounding change so that change becomes a growth experience. Laying out an action plan with specific steps can give you the feeling of control – you get to ask questions, make the decisions, make the plan, and move forward. Fighting change it wasted energy and the negative energy created by the useless fight impacts you and those around you (sorta like skids’ useless arguments and negativity affects US!).

Comments

Iamwoman's picture

Wow! This is a really great blog Aniki!

I myself don't do well with change.

I think it's because, throughout my childhood, my family moved every year. The longest we stayed in one state once was for four years, then moved again. I was constantly the new girl in school, and constantly had to leave friends and make new friends. This was extremely hard on me since I am an introvert.

I guess because of my childhood, I associate change with extreme stress and upheaval - it always makes me panic and always makes me edgy, regardless of whether it's big or small, bad or good change. My reaction is the same.

Honestly, I don't know how to get over this since it's so deeply ingrained in my psyche from a young age. 

I love routines, I am methodical in many areas of my life, but still, enjoy spontaneous vacations and fun nights out! It's just those "long-term" changes - new job, permanent change in schedule, long-term injury, new school for kids (like moving from middle to high, etc), new job for DH, family members moving, friends moving, a break in routine (unless it's a vacation or fun night out randomly), even when DH let me be a SAHM for three months once (I freaked out for two of the months because it was a change, and then freaked out again when I went back to work - not for any particular reason because I enjoy both).

Even with an action plan, I still freak out - these feelings run deep apparently.

I would love to embrace change and move into new permanent routines or positions in life without the full-on panic mode.

Aniki's picture

Iamwoman, I typically do well with change. When I don't, I find that I almost always fall into the I'm Not Enough category. My DH is NOT a new things kinda guy. He likes the comfort of repetition and the 'known".

I definitely love routines (I have OCD), but very much enjoy trying new things. I have to plan carefully, though, so the trying doesn't trigger anything!

ESMOD's picture

I'm one of those people that park in the same parking place every day at work... go to the same gas stations etc...  The familiar is comforting and there is less unknown.  Some changes I can embrace... but others fall into the category of "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".

hereiam's picture

I park in the same parking place at work, also. Then, one day, I started parking in random places, for about two weeks. Some people were a wreck! I wasn't even parking in THEIR spots (we are a small company, with a huge parking lot). It was hilarious.

Aniki's picture

They were a wreck because YOUR car was in a different spot? That's kinda weird to me...

ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

ONe of my co-workers changed her parking spot,, you wouldn't believe how much people flip out over those things! It was like full out chaos!!! One of the other people literally threw a fit and parked right behind her. It was childish as heck.

Aniki's picture

ESMOD, I have OCD and there are some habits I simply canNOT alter or I spend the day on the verge of freaking out. I actually park in a different spot every day. It's one thing I can do (surprisingly) with comfort!

Besides, YOU won't forget where you parked your car!! Biggrin

Major Blunder's picture

Since I gave Aniki the idea for this with my outpour from yesterday I guess it is only right that I jump right in here.

I’m not necessarily afraid of change, it’s a part of life and I believe that my parents did prepare me well enough for it, in some cases all too well.

Big life changing change seems to almost charge me with ambition and drive, it’s a challenge, a hurtle to overcome or breakdown. It’s the continuing effects from that change that I don’t always do well with on a day to day basis, losing something because of the change, etc etc.

I have mentioned that I am disabled, long story short I had inflammation of the spinal chord at age eleven that cause catstrophic neuro/muscular damage, I was paralyzed from the shoulders down and had to learn to basically do everything again and nothing works right to this day.  So big changes are the norm for me and I have to overcome them, it’s almost pathological for me not to meet a challenge head on, especially if it is huge and daunting.  I have to show I am SuperMan, I know, I’m an idiot  lol

Little changes are annoyances, not getting the parking spot I want, construction on my route to and from work, a store no longer carrying a certain item, that kind of thing.  But also almost daily I get thrown curve balls from my disability or from the GKs and that can throw me for a loop, completely make me lose my chit.

I’m not exactly OCD but I do have routines that I follow pretty closely and if those are thrown off, I get pissy and agitated, but I have learned to temper that more and more over the years, it’s not always perfect everyday but I handle it better than I used too.

I fear more the possible changes, the negative probabilities of my current state and that is really not productive as these are things that have not happened yet and may never.  But still I have a “ Plan for the worst, hope for the best” mentality leaning more towards plan for the worst.

I once heard someone say and I have repeated it several times, “ When we make plans, God laughs!”

 

Aniki's picture

I watched the movie "Baywatch" last night. Wait a tick.... didn't I see you in the crowd of bystanders when Ronnie gets his junk stuck??

Cover1W's picture

I like and appreciate change as long as I understand why it's happening.

If I have no control over it I may have a fit or two but I'll come around (personal stuff mostly, like DH changing schedules for a vaild reason but not giving me notice).

I'll usually want to direct the change and convince others to do it too.

Yay change!

queensway's picture

Ahh yes change. We either hate it or love it. But you are so very right Aniki it is a constant in ours lives.

When things seem to being going well in our lives and something traumatic happens we hate change. We have a hard time accepting things. It in some cases changes who we are and we struggle day to day. Then all we want is for things to not hurt or for our pain to go away. So then all we want is something to change again. We want and need positive change. I do believe that something good can come from something bad. But like your blog said we can't fight change. If we don't we will never grow and learn what our lives really mean.

Aniki's picture

Queen, I've missed you!!

I know people who balk at the tiniest changes. A new brand of mechanical pencil will send them into a tizzy. Heaven knows how they deal with the big stuff!!

Siemprematahari's picture

I fear change as much as I know that living in my comfort zone will not reward me with growth. I like feeling comfortable, being in control, and knowing what to expect. However for the last few years I've been wanting to relocate from my current state. I'm almost finished with my bachelors degree and have written out somewhat of a plan of what I want to do after I obtain my degree. I write them down so it gives these things life.

I'm tired of the hustle & bustle of the city. I want to live in a better neighborhood where I'm a bit closer to nature and enjoy some peace and quite. I know deep within me that I want and need the change but afraid to jump. I'm afraid because I fear of failing. I fear what if I move and don't like the new state or neighborhood? What if I don't make friends? What if I don't find a good paying job with people that I like? Its like I find all the "what ifs" instead of focusing on all that can go right.

So I love this post and thank you for allowing me to reflect upon myself yet again because I want to make moves, I need to make moves, I need and want to change the very thing I constantly complain about. If I don't change, it will always be this way so I have to be brave and jump....

 

Just Jump......................................and have faith that everything will be fine.

 

Aniki's picture

Hon, I wish you the very best with your Jump!

There are times I've needed to make changes but put them off. And that has sometimes put me in a position to jump or burn. Hard way to learn it's better to move with the change than to resist and suffer.