We’ve all heard the pithy sayings, “Change is the only constant” and, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” There’s some truth to these statements, and as research is showing us, change can be healthy for us. When we begin to look at change as a benefit, we open ourselves to being more mindful, more successful, and healthier overall.
Change makes us more mindful
If we were to recall the last time we had to make a large change in life, what would we remember? Perhaps it was a sense of chaos or a sense of helplessness, but maybe it was a sense of wonder — at what could happen. Change opens us up to new opportunities, whether those opportunities are times for self-exploration, advancing a career, or learning to love living in someplace new.
Change helps us understand our values
Change also helps us to focus on the things that are important to us: our values. If we are faced with a negative change, we suddenly begin to notice all of the important aspects of our lives: our friends, our family, our job, whatever those blessings are, they become more prominent. In times of change, we may be challenged with a tough decision, one that leaves us deciding between the morally right and difficult choice, or the easier but ethically inferior option. Whatever the challenge, change causes us to take pause and think things through.
Change makes us more successful
Did you know that a change in scenery can do us good? According to a study published in Social Psychological and Personality Science, study-abroad students who approached changes in culture and their location in a healthy way had more opportunities opened to them. Specifically, these students were offered more jobs upon return. In addition, the study showed that students experienced increased reasoning and thinking skills as a result of just a few months’ change of location.
Change causes us to be more flexible
As harsh as it may sound, change forces us to be more flexible. Flexibility is a great tool for success. Anyone who has experienced a large amount of change in their life will tell you that although you can be resistant to it at first, eventually you just start going with the flow because it’s easier that way. The good news is, the more we practice gracefully moving through times of change, the easier it becomes, and the more adaptable we find ourselves becoming.
Change makes us healthier
When we make the decision to change something in our lives, such as implementing a new workout routine, change can make us healthier. By making a small change in a healthy direction — and celebrating when you achieve a milestone — you can enjoy a series of changes that will make you healthier.
Easier said than done, right?
Dealing with or making changes is easier than you might think. Start by letting go of limiting beliefs by investing time in stress-relief techniques like meditation or yoga. When you’re no longer operating from a place of stress, you’ll be able to handle the change in your life a little easier.
Approach changes with wonderment, rather than dread. We may learn something new, meet someone new, or experience someone new, but if we’re expecting only negative outcomes, that’s what we’ll experience. Finally, we should always surround ourselves with good influences, but this is especially true during times of change. Keep company with people who will build you up and know how to cheer you up.
In the end, change is inevitable, but it can be healthy for us. How has change helped propel you forward in life? What are your thoughts about healthy changes?
—The Alternative Daily