Change is a frightening process. It seems to be one of the most challenging aspects of our life. But what makes us resist change so strongly?
In my client work I’ve seen various levels of resistance to change and I found some common causes in the process and as many ways of fighting them:
Safety. We tend to feel safe in a familiar environment. Change means giving up the comfortable NOW for the unknown of the future and we all find it difficult to handle insecurity. This keeps us in unhappy relationships, in jobs we hate and in destructive patterns of behaviours. I encourage my clients to first identify the pros and cons for changing, then visualise that change happening and expand their perspective beyond the present moment. Exploring the benefits and loses from change helps us develop a more accepting stance towards that prospect and breaks down some of the barriers, allowing space for action.
Anxiety seems to grow higher when we get exposed to new environments. Most people experience high levels of fear when they are about to step into new circumstances, meet new people or start new ventures. This keeps us tense and unhappy and prevents us from accessing new opportunities and grow in life. I work with my clients to understand their anxiety, then to accept it as part of their human nature. When clients learn to accept what is they are more inclined to explore other ways of being or doing things which prepares the road to change.
Confusion is often preventing people from shifting from one place to another. There are many misconceptions about many things and there is too much influence from the outside world in our lives. In a confused state people remain stuck in their old way functioning and do not seek out for challenges. I empower my clients to get outside the box and explore their lives from new perspectives which helps them find clarity and direction in life and facilitates the change process.
Low self-belief is preventing us from getting out there and sharing our talents with the world. We think we are not good enough and we continuously search for evidence that that is not the case. Many people waste their special gifts because they cannot believe in themselves, sometimes even when they have the proof that they have achieved a lot in life. I guide my clients to start their journey within and discover what event(s) have contributed to creating that false belief and, once discovered, I support them rewrite their life history in a positive language, accept the past and forgive which helps them embrace change more easily.
Crowd following is another issue in the way of change. Sometimes even driven and ambitious people avoid changing or daring to be different because most people around them are following other paths. People tend to feel scared at the thought of a lonely journey and start to feel insecure and anxious which makes them give up on their dreams and aspirations in life. I encourage my clients to search within for what is meaningful for them and act on their wishes. I also support them strengthen their sense of self to feel in touch with their inner world and silence the voices from the outer world which seems to make change smoother.
There is a combination of factors that prevent us change, but we can learn about minds and reshuffle our programming, we can embrace our human nature and we can face the pressures of the outer world to create those happy and fulfilling lives we long for.