How to handle anxiety during big changes & transitions

Most people tend to be at least a little stressed in the middle of a big change. They actually don’t tend to look much like this adorable couple, but I still like the photo because that doggo is so cute.

It tends to look a little more aggravated, distressed, etc.

But what if we could be more like this couple? What if we could embrace the fact that things are changing, our schedule and routine are out the window, and that that’s totally fine?

Often times we get a little to attached to our perfectionist tendencies and we waste time on thoughts like: “If I stay organized, I can feel calm”, or, “If I could just get it together things would be going a lot smoother.”

What if we tried GRACE on during these crazy times? Instead of doing more to feel better, what if we do WAY less and decide we’re okay with it?

Remember: our THOUGHTS cause our feelings, not our circumstances. The clean house isn’t what makes you calm, it’s your thought, “okay, I can relax now because my house is clean.”

What if you gave yourself that permission way in advance? What if there’s boxes everywhere but you’re tired and it’s time to go to bed? What if you decide, “I’ve put in enough for the day. I’m going to go to sleep, this can all wait til tomorrow.”

Let’s take a closer look at this. We’re going to delve into our thoughts, our feelings, and our actions in a big change or transition. So not only are we going to look at the “dos & donts” but we are going to take it a step further to the “thoughts to keep and thoughts to throw out”. LET’S GO!

Your THOUGHTS

Often during a big transition or change, there is so much to get done. Often our brains grab on to the thought, “I have so much to do”. What does that thought create for us? Does it HELP us get stuff done? We might get it done, but not generally from a place where we’re enjoying it.

I want to tell you guys that you never HAVE to do anything. You don’t have to unpack your boxes. You don’t have to clean up. You don’t have to be nice to your family.

Now do you want to CHOOSE to do some of these things? I would guess that you probably do. But it’s ALWAYS a choice. This is so important because humans don’t like to be told what to do, even if it’s coming from ourselves. When we keep the belief that we “have” to do something, it immediately becomes a chore, therefore we are usually annoyed, bored, or resentful while we perform these tasks.

So what if we tweak this thought just barely during your big change? How about, “I want to get these boxes unpacked.” The change of one word makes it even lighter right? That gets us to come from a place of acceptance rather than dragging our feet to perform the task.

But what if we take it a step farther?

What if we could make this FUN? Now if you aren’t ready for that, that’s fine, but I say if there’s an opportunity for some fun, I want to take it. A thought that creates fun may sound like “I can’t wait to get my house put together. This is going to be so fun.”

Or maybe, “I have a whole new city to explore.”

In a job change, “wow, there is so much to learn here and I can’t wait to soak it all in.”

If these thoughts sound annoyingly positive to you that’s fine, go ahead and tone them down a little bit, but with this slight change in perspective, we really can create much better feelings for ourselves which will aid in creating the results we want.

Your FEELINGS

Now just because our thoughts create our feelings, doesn’t mean we are going to feel good all the time. Especially during big transitions, our emotions might be up and then down and then up again. This is one of the first things I want you to tell yourself, “wow, this is crazy, and it’s totally normal.”

It is so dangerous to tell ourselves we “should” be feeling something different. Often these toxic feelings come from thoughts like, “I shouldn’t be feeling this way, this is the job I wanted!”

Yeah, it is, and you still do. But it takes time to adjust and that’s totally normal.

Here’s the alternative to spinning in your thoughts about your negative feelings when they do come up: feel them.

EMBRACE them.

Don’t resist it, don’t force yourself to feel something else, but lean into it. Where do you feel it in your body? Does it move? Does it have a shape? Is it hot? Cold? Warm? This process will help you process the emotion, so you are able to move on and move forward to create more effective actions.

Your ACTIONS

Your actions are the things you do. Now, sometimes we are really good at doing the things we need to do during a transition, but we are doing it from thoughts and feelings that make us feel miserable while we do them.

Here’s an example: T: I have to get all this training done for work –> F: resistant —> A: do the work training (ineffectively and miserably.)

There is a chance that perhaps you feel so annoyed about the things you “have” to do that you don’t do them, and that’s fine, but cleaning up our thoughts and our feelings can help us accomplish things and show up in a way that is much more pleasant for those around us.

So, decide what you WANT to get done during this change, and do it. Sometimes, we can get to a place where we feel more excited about it, but other times, we just do it and we aren’t happy about it and that’s also fine. I would invite you to just observe how much better it is when we stop telling ourselves what to do and we accomplish and do simply because we want to.

You got this!

That’s all for this one, but see my Youtube video (linked below) for even more tips about handling your anxiety during this big change. Stay calm, I love you!

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