sucˇcess: (n.) The achievement of something desired, planned, or attempted

How To Deal With Change

It is often said that the only things in life that are inevitable are death and taxes. Well, you can add a third item to the things that are inevitable, and that is change. And change is happening faster than at any time in human history.

When the Berlin Wall came down and the Worldwide Web went up, the world changed forever. The Industrial Age came to an end and the Communication Age began. If "the good old days" ever did exist, they are gone forever. We are caught up in a perpetual motion of change, swirling all around us, that we will never be able to avoid. In other words, this rate of change is here to stay.

To deal effectively with change you cannot let it frustrate or upset you. You cannot attempt to minimize or avoid change. Instead, you have to learn how to deal with change, and use it to your advantage.

It begins with acceptance. Change is an essential element of life itself, yet we almost instinctively resist it. Most people believe that if they ignore change, it won't happen. That if they ignore change, somehow time will turn back to the way things were years ago. But that is not going to happen.

Change is occuring so quickly, in fact, that we no longer have the luxury of adapting to it gradually. Instead of resisting change, we have to develop the habit of welcoming and working with it. The future belongs to those who anticipate change and have a plan to respond to it. We'll never be able to completely contol change, but we can manage our participation in it and our reaction to it.

The most valuable quality your can ever develop to deal with change is flexibility. You must form the habit of remaining open-minded and adaptable to new information and circumstances. When things go wrong and problems come up, as they often do, instead of becoming upset and frustrated, look for the benefit that is always contained in the change.

In order to be able to master change, you always have to remain calm and keep your wits about you in the midst of unexpected turbulence. First, take a deep breath, relax, and then assess the situation objectively. It is always important to keep yourself calm and unemotional. You can do this, by asking questions and seeking information when things don't work out the way you would like them to.

Whenever an unexpected change or setback occurs, successful people immediately focus their mind on where they want to be at a future time. This future vision is something that he or she has planned and given a lot of thought to, so it is fairly easy to conjure up at a moment's notice.

Since your conscious mind can only hold one thought at a time, when you make a habit of continuously thinking about your goal or your future vision, your mind immediately becomes calm and positive. You feel in control of the situation and your life. Successful men and woman always choose the future over the past. They never loose time and energy by looking around for someone to blame or criticize. They keep themselves performing at their best by thinking and talking about their desired future.

The critical issue in dealing with change is having control. Most of your stress and unhappiness in life comes as a result of feeling out of control in a particular area in your life. If you think about the times or places where you feel the very best about yourself, you will notice a high degree of control in those places. One of the reasons why you like to come home after a trip is because, after you walk through your front door, you feel completely in control of your environment.

The only thing you have complete control over is content of your conscious mind. So, for you to effectively deal with change, you must have full control over thoughts. Since change is inevitable and continuous, it is how you think about what is happening to you that will be the most important factor in determining how change will affect you. How you think about what is happening to you will determine whether you will use change to your advantage or let it work to your disadvantage.

To succeed in the Communication Age, you must become a "change master." You have to learn to welcome and embrace change. You must be able to ride the tides of change rather than trying to swim against them. You can do this by taking control of the direction of change in your life and assuring that it is predominantly positive and brings about the improvements you want in your life.

You can greatly increase your stability during these often turbulent times of change by setting goals and then making a detailed written plan to achieve them. Goals enable you to control the direction of change. When you have goals, change becomes planned and deliberate, instead of random and haphazard. Goals assure that the changes that take place in your life are primarily self-determined to be positive and move you toward what you want to achieve, rather than blow you off course.

When you have a clear vision of where you're going and what you want to accomplish, you develop resilience, which is the ability to bounce back rather than break. You develop a positive attitude and you become the type of person who is resistant to the negative emotions that affect people who do not have goals or any direction in their life.

One of the best ways to deal with change is to simply to accept the change as a reality. Acceptance is the opposite of rejection or resistance. Acceptance keeps your mind calm and positive. The minute you accept that a change has occurred, you immediately become more capable of dealing with the change and turning it to your advantage.

Often, a change signals that your plans are incomplete or that you might be heading in the wrong direction. Serious changes, which seemingly create real problems, are often signals that you are on the wrong track. Instead of resisting change, like a pine tree that snaps in a strong wind, you need to learn to bend with change, like willow tree. Once you learn to do this, you'll find that change is a healthy and positive step toward achieving your goals.

If you look at any change, you will always find something good and beneficial in it for you. Always look for the valuable lesson that is contained within every change. What is the hidden advantage that you can turn into your benefit? Could this change save you from a much bigger problem in the future? Since you mind can hold only one thought at a time, always force yourself to look for the positive aspect of any change. When you do this, you'll keep your mind clear, and you'll keep your attitude optimistic and confident.

Successful men and women are always able to deal effectively in a rapidly changing situation. The higher up you go, the greater your income and responsibilities will be and in turn, the faster change will be all around you. Your ability to function with calmness, clarity, and quiet assurance in every situation will determine your success in times of change more than anything else. If you are going to be successful in the Communication Age, you have to accept change, improve upon it, and then move on to the next situation. As you continue to do this, you will have such a wonderful feeling of self-control and self-determination that your whole life will be bright and positive. The results you can achieve in every area of your life will be unlimited.

CopyrightŠ2005 by Joe Love and JLM & Associates, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.

Joe Love draws on his 25 years of experience helping both individuals and companies build their businesses, increase profits, and achieve total success. A former ad agency executive and marketing consultant, Joe's work in personal development focuses on helping his clients identify hidden marketable assets that create windfall opportunities and profits, as well as sound personal happiness and peace.

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