How to Deal with Unexpected Change
For most people, life tends to settle into a routine. This is absolutely a good thing as the better your life is planned out and the more good habits you have created in yourself, then the better you can perform in nearly every aspect of this often demanding, task. However, there is one factor in planning that should never be forgotten – the inevitability of change.
You could well have a daily routine that revolves around the hours you are at work and the tasks you can realistically fit in when you are not there. Then, suddenly, your working hours could completely change, you could get a new job and need to move, your children could start school and require a different type of parenting or…well, the thing about change is that it can involve anything at all.
There is also expected change and unexpected change. Both are a challenge, but the former allows you the luxury of planning for it. Nevertheless, even where change is expected, you might not know what it will actually be like until ithas happened.
In one sense then, dealing with change is all about adaption – and often adaption that can only be realized once the change has happened. Even so, as with everything else, forward planning can help a lot.
Planning for Change
Next Level Daily, a company specializing in planners and habit journals, say that planning for change means planning for both the unknown and the known. The new tasks and commitments you are aware are coming are things that you can put into your planner at the daily or weekly level.
This will show you your new provision of free time – and that free time should be reserved for the unexpected changes, for example the commitments to new kinds of work at your new job.
However, the element of the unknown in any major life change means that you can never plan for it exactly. A good tip then is to leave yourself more leeway than it seems like you need.You can always edit things once the change has actually come to pass.
Dealing with Change
Of course, there is more to change than simply finding a new way to plan. Change – especially unexpected change – can take quite the psychological toll, and sometimes you might want to integrate some new coping mechanisms into your life.
As change can be absolutely anything, it is hard to give exact advice here. Nonetheless, here follows some tips for dealing with change:
Acknowledge the New Normal
Pretending that change hasn’t happened will not make it go away. It will only make you inept at handling it, simply by sticking to the old methods when there’s a new reality. This can take some mental discipline, but the alternative is acting as if you live in a world that doesn’t exist anymore.
Plan What You Can
Discussed above, it is worth repeating that there are some elements of change for which you can plan. Reducing chaos where you can, and ahead of time, is a terrific way to deal with the chaos that remains.
Keep At It
With unexpected change, you might find that there are too many unknown elements for any effective plan to be created. The tactic in that case should then become “learn on the job”. Habit forming is a psychological process that involves doing the same thing every day; a change in your life can be similarly dealt with by just engaging with it every day.
Ultimately, the main reason it’s important to be able to deal with change is that, like it or not, it is inevitable.