Not If But When: 3 Strategies to Thrive on Change in 2017

Mary Foley Uncategorized

Not If But When: 3 Strategies to Thrive on Change in 2017

If 2016 felt kind of “crazy” – in politics, your career, even personally – what will 2017 bring?

One answer I’d bet on in Vegas: More change.

The entire world is going through huge (and small) shifts that are impacting every part of our lives personally and professionally. It’s not a matter of IF change will happen, but when and how.  And most importantly, how you will respond.

No one has a crystal ball, but this is for sure: You need to have the mindset and strategies to make change work for you rather than against you. Reacting, unequipped, could create a huge personal setback.

[bctt tweet=”No one has a crystal ball for 2017, but this is for sure: You need to make change work FOR you. ” username=”BodaciousMary”]

Will you worry and obsess about things that can go wrong, or will you find new vistas thrilling, knowing full well there will be hazards along the way?

It takes a lot of nerve and spirit to actually thrive on change. Maybe you’re worried you won’t be able to keep up to stay current with your profession. Maybe you’re afraid that the next layoff will include you. Maybe you wonder if you can still find clients.

This is what author William Bridges calls the “emotional wilderness.” Its fear associated with knowing you’re along for the ride, without any clear idea of the final outcome, and very concerned that you may lose something precious along the way. It’s are very natural concerns. Yet, by being strategic and proactive you can make changes work for you rather than against you in 2017.  Here are three strategies how:

#1 – Expect Some Initial Discomfort

“The first task of transition management is to leave home,” says author William Bridges. Your own personal transition management challenge is to convince yourself to leave home, whether “home” is a department at work, old personal habits, or a home life that has become toxic.

You will feel uncomfortable for a time. Old weaknesses and insecurities that you managed to efficiently camouflage in the old systems suddenly make themselves obvious. The stress of change can lower your immune system and cause you to catch the flu, a cold, or a case of hives. You may temporarily feel like a mess. Do you best to take care of yourself and keep going.

#2 – Get Outside Perspective Whenever You Can

You may not know how good you really are until you leave your fishbowl. When you’re sealed up in your own environment, working hard and focusing on the tasks immediately in front of you, you can lose perspective. It’s easy to fall in the trap of self-criticism without any real sense of how you compare to external colleagues. I say get out there! You may discover that you are farther ahead than you thought.

#3 – Create Change in Half Steps

When I worked at AOL (when AOL was cool), we were creating change in giant strides, but in my personal life, I discovered the best way to change was in manageable half steps. Half steps help you test whether the change process is giving you desired results. When we lose weight gradually, we stand a better chance of keeping it off. When we give ourselves half-step goals, we can stop, acknowledge our progress, congratulate ourselves for any improvement, and then step up to the next level.

I could have decided to leave AOL entirely in hopes of saving a marriage that already was strained and not getting better with my current efforts. And I considered it. Instead, I found the half step of finding another position within the company as head of corporate training allowed me to still be part of this adventure while reserving my time and energy to nurture my marriage.

Want more ideas to make change work for you in 2017? You can find them in my FREE e-book How to Thrive on Change for Your Career…Now More Than Ever! where I share:

• What to expect when change happens (no, you’re not nuts!)
• 6 practical strategies to thrive on change you can use right away
• A simple approach to making those dang decisions
• Your real source of security
• And more!

Go here to get a copy. Plus I will send you ongoing ideas to keep you energized all year long. Because more change is coming. But you don’t have to feel ill-equipped or alone. Let’s do 2017 together!

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