How can I overcome my fear of change? is likely a question, you’re asking if you know you struggle to cope with change and know it’s because of this reason you’re life isn’t changing.
And so, why I’ve written this article just for you.
I know exactly what it feels like to desperately want to change your life but feel there’s something holding you back and stopping you from actually doing it.
Just like the fear of change does.
Therefore, why I’ve written this article to help you with:
– Identifying three main types of change you might experience
– Why you might fear these changes; and
– How working with a Counselling Psychotherapist will support you to overcome your fear of change.
So let’s dive in.
Fear of change
As with everything I talk about, you first need to understand the why behind your fear before you can do anything about it.
Because it’s only in doing so, you’ll be more likely to take action towards changing your life.
Therefore, let’s begin with what causes a fear of change.
What causes a fear of change?
Fear of change is often down to our interpretation and belief that change is bad.
As well as, our interpretation and belief that if we’re feeling a certain way about a change in our lives then that’s bad too and is a sign that we’re not meant to do it.
For instance, this could be the interpretation and belief that change results in only the loss of something or the disadvantage of something.
Like, had you lost a friend at a young age and interpreted that change as bad for you because you would then be left alone and have no friends.
Why am I afraid to move forward with my life?
Your belief that change is bad for you alone, however, isn’t the only reason for your fear of change and thus, moving your life forward. It’s also because you fear and believe change is also bad for others too.
And because of your need for validation from others, you go along with the status quo in order to not rock the boat and cause disruption.
Negative and positive consequences of change
So far, it’s safe to say what’s rooted behind your fear of change are pessimistic thoughts, feelings and beliefs.
Therefore, to really be able to overcome your fear of change you need to be able to transform your negative thoughts, feelings and beliefs towards change into more positive ones.
So to help you with this, let’s look at why change is positive.
Why is change positive?
One way to view change as positive, therefore, is to recognise that:
a) there are both upsides AND downsides to any change before you; and
b) the upsides far outweigh the downsides, since often changes happen in our lives not to hurt us, but to help us, even if it doesn’t necessarily feel or appear that way at the time.
In addition, change is positive when you can see it as an inevitable part of life.
Since, in doing so, you will be better able to take control of what you can control, which is your thoughts, beliefs and actions when change does strike.
How can I overcome my fear of change to completely transform my life?
Types of change
To further, support you with this, however, it may be helpful to also take a look at the three main types of change there are.
So when they do arise in your life, the range of emotion you’re likely to feel by them, don’t catch you off guard.
Therefore, also giving you the chance to acknowledge them as a normal part of your experience as opposed to them meaning something is wrong with you or reading too much into them in terms of the action you are to take or not take in your life as a result of them.
What are the three main types of change?
The three main types of change there are, therefore, are:
|1. Unexpected change|
|2. Change we expect/kind of expect|
|3. Change we initiate|
1) Type of change: Unexpected change
Unexpected change can be the most hard-hitting change we could ever experience because it’s outside of our awareness and not something we have experienced before.
Therefore, it can completely come out of the blue and blindside us.
In addition, it’s usually dependent on someone else or something else outside of us, making a decision and taking an action, which will directly impact us but which, we have no control of.
So can’t stop.
In this instance too, we might have a choice about whether to go along with the change or whether to make a different choice for ourselves.
But the question is do we see it from that perspective?
And do we consciously and intentionally make a choice, which is considered to be in our best interests?
As opposed to going along with our fears.
Which, in our case, we likely don’t.
What unexpected change feels like?
Unexpected change feels like fear, overwhelm, distrust, anxiety and depression even.
It, therefore, feels disorienting when it happens, like you don’t know where to go from there because you’re in so much shock.
An example of unexpected change
Unexpected change can be an organisational change, such as a redundancy or a merger.
Perhaps it might be a change our parents make for us or did make for us when we were growing up, which left a negative emotional imprint on us.
2) Type of change: Change we expect/kind of expect
Change we expect/kind of expect is change that once again happens in our outside environment.
However, this time, it’s more due to someone else or something else outside of us making a decision and taking a decision on their own behalf and in their best interests.
So it doesn’t directly affect us because it’s not a change we’ve got to implement within our own lives.
But it does affect us because the change someone or something else is making will have a knock-on effect on our emotional well-being.
However, with this type of change as opposed to an unexpected change, it’s something we have experienced before, therefore, we kind of get an inkling or we know it’s going to happen, before it does happen.
But we just don’t really what to admit it to ourselves because we don’t know how to handle the change or how to prepare for it when/were it to happen.
So we just go along with what has been until it happens.
And it blindsides and catches us off guard.
What change we expect/kind of expect feels like?
This type of change feels disheartening because like unexpected change, it isn’t necessarily a change that we feel we want or need in our lives.
But it’s a change that we feel we’ve got no other choice but to accept because it’s usually in the best interests of someone or something else.
And each person and organisation has to do what’s right for them whether we like it or not.
LEARN MORE: HOW TO FIND YOUR WORTH AND WHY IT MATTERS
Examples of a change we expect/kind of expect
Examples of changes we expect/kind of expect include, a friend or colleague leaving.
Someone getting in a relationship, getting married, having a kid etc.
Or this could even be graduating from school, college or university.
3) Type of change: Change we initiate
Change we initiate ourselves can be the most difficult out of all of them, however.
In particular, if for the most part we like whatever it is we’re looking to change, however, there’s something about it we’ve become bored with or we just feel like we need a change in our lives.
Once the change is initiated, however, it becomes somewhat easier because the change is on our own terms.
And we’ve made a particular decision for the change based on our own clear reasoning and constant consideration over the potential change.
Therefore, giving us time to come to terms with our decision.
What change we initiate feels like?
Change we initiate ourselves, therefore, feels scary because we’re likely to also have the voices of others in our heads, which tell us not to do something because of what we’ll be missing out on (as opposed to what we’ll be potentially gaining) by taking action towards it.
But also empowering as we choose to follow that still inner voice inside and learn to tune out the voices of others, which do not support our desires and beliefs that what we want to do is possible for us.
Therefore, it feels like we’re in control of our lives and our own destiny.
An example of a change we initiate
This type of change might be to go travelling, to return back to education, to start your own business, choosing to work with a Counselling Psychotherapist.
How can I overcome my fear of change?
The key, therefore, as I talk more about in my article A COMPLETE GUIDE ON WHAT YOU NEED TO DO TO MAKE LIFE BETTER to overcome your fear of change, is to work with your subconscious mind (a.k.a your body).
As doing so will also lead you to overcome other fears, doubts and insecurities you have about yourself and your life.
Therefore, where working with a Counselling Psychotherapist comes in.
Working with a Counselling Psychotherapist
Your body has information that your conscious mind is completely unaware of on a day-to-day basis.
Therefore, you can’t gain access to the information your body has for you if you keep moving from one activity to the next, not really sitting with it in silence and solitude to be able to hear what it’s communicating to you.
Whether that’s in image form or verbal self talk form.
Therefore, not allowing you to be able to identify and resolve your struggles with your therapist.
And anything, which hasn’t been analysed can’t be transformed.
Therefore, where meditation and mindfulness will come in as this will support you in coming up with realisations about yourself you never even knew you had.
And so can work through with your therapist so you can change your life.
When you talk to your therapist, you also get access to your subconscious mind as it also helps you to stop and pause and come to realisations you might have not come to otherwise.
As I talk more about in my article 4 MIND-BLOWING TOOLS THAT WILL CHANGE YOUR WORLD AND HELP YOU TO OVERCOME PAST REGRETS Matrix Reimprinting is the act of visualising and completely reimaging a situation, which has taken place in your past differently.
As well as, at the same time feeding you with positive thoughts and affirmations to change how you feel about a particular situation and scenario, which has taken place.
Therefore, providing you with further support in moving your life forward instead of becoming stuck by something, which may be within your subconscious mind, and you have no idea how to shift on your own.
The result of working with a Counselling Psychotherapist
The result of working with a Counselling Psychotherapist in this way, therefore, is it will help you to develop 5 ways to cope with change.
What are 5 ways to cope with change?
The 5 ways to cope with change you’ll develop, therefore, include:
- Openness and honesty (with yourself)
- Emotional intelligence
- A strong sense of self-worth and self-esteem
- Comfortability with intiating changes in your own life; and
- Understanding and empathy
Which are important for the following reasons…
1) Openness and honesty
No matter who you are and whatever type of change you’re experiencing, you’re going to have shall we say…”feelings”…about the change.
So it’s in your ability to be open and honest with yourself about what you’re truly thinking, feeling and believing about this change (in regards to you and what it means for you and about you), that you can better handle it.
As, by doing so, you’ll be able to implement positive self-talk to help you alleviate your fears, worries, doubts and anxieties regarding the changing situation before you.
2) Emotional intelligence
Being open and honest with yourself, further, will allow you to develop greater emotional intelligence, which is important to be able to overcome any feelings you’re experiencing in regards to a change.
So, where implementing the tools and practices I talk about in these posts >>> 4 MIND-BLOWING TOOLS THAT WILL CHANGE YOUR WORLD AND HELP YOU TO OVERCOME PAST REGRETS and 3 TOOLS TO GROW OUTSIDE THERAPY SESSIONS come in handy in better weathering the storm of any one of the changes I discussed earlier.
3) A strong sense of self-worth and self-esteem
In every aspect of life, is this invisible undercurrent of self-worth and self-esteem, which I talk more about in my article HOW TO FIND YOUR WORTH AND WHY IT MATTERS.
And when talking about change, self-worth and self-esteem come into play more so than perhaps anywhere else, since as Heraclitus says:
Therefore, we’re always having to readjust and recalibrate ourselves to any of the three types of changes I’ve mentioned above.
Which, without having a strong sense of self-worth and self-esteem (i.e. identity), we’re less able to do.
As we’re more likely to take them more personally than we need to.
And no I don’t mean a false sense of self-worth and self-esteem (i.e. the kind you gotta ‘fake it till you make it’ kind) because if you feel like you’ve gotta fake it, it ain’t real.
It’s a lie you’ve been telling yourself all this time to make yourself feel better about you.
4) Comfortability with initiating changes in your own life
Often in life and as we grow up, so many decisions are made for us by others, namely our parents and the education system, that it’s all too easy for us to go through life never really initiating any of our own life changes.
Therefore, stagnating our own sense of self-esteem and self-worth even further as we go along with what looks like has already been decided for us.
But in reality, as I mentioned earlier, which we do have a choice about.
Although, what seems a subtle choice, until that is, we become aware of the choices that are available to us and the significance of them working with a Counselling Psychotherapist.
As a result, you’re ability to cope with change, as well as, to overcome your fear of change, requires you to get comfortable with initiating your own changes in life, even if you feel afraid to in the beginning.
Since the more tangible actions you take, the more confident you’ll become.
5) Understanding and empathy
Getting comfortable with initiating your own changes in life too, then leads you to achieve more understanding and empathy with others, as you understand your own reasoning for the life choices you’ve made in your own life.
So making it easier to apply that same reasoning for why a change might be occurring on the outside.
Which, makes change lesser of an issue as you come to embrace and accept change as a natural cause of life and usually in your best interests.
Even if it doesn’t necessarily feel that way at the time the change is taking place.
Summary: How can I overcome my fear of change to completely transform my life?
So, there you have it, your answer to how can I overcome my fear of change to completely transform my life?
Understand what’s behind your fear of change, be prepared for the three types of change you’re likely to come across in your life so you can better manage the emotions, which are likely to arise from them and work with a Counselling Psychotherapist to overcome your fear of change on a much deeper level through your subconscious mind.
Now over to you…
I’d love to know you’re thoughts on the fear of change so let me know in the comment section below.
And don’t forget to subscribe to my email newsletter below to stay in the know on how working with a Counselling Psychotherapist can change your life.
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