Our brains have evolved to keep us alive; the fight or flight response kicks in and adrenaline, nor-adrenaline and cortisol surge through your body to prepare you to fight for your life or run from the real and present danger. And that’s just because the oven’s broken! Our bodies have evolved to keep us safe which has worked well for the most part but what our brains don’t like is change. We are wired, generally to stick to what we know and stay within the parameters in which we feel safe. If you want to change jobs, for instance you’ll need to access a lot of energy to convince yourself that it will be a good thing to do. Self-doubt creeps in as you complete the application and thoughts of not bothering with it come to the fore. It’s not easy is it?
Comfortable but not always safe emotionally
The strange thing is that our brains feel more comfortable with what we know, even when that’s not a good place. When relationships aren’t supportive and nurturing, and when work environments make us feel upset and defeated. Because it’s what we know, our brain would prefer that we stick with that negative situation or environment, rather than find the kick ass energy needed to get ourselves into something much more kind and supportive. Change is difficult but it’s not impossible; people do it all the time. The key can be to manage your emotions; the self-doubt, the worry and anxiety, the nervousness. And the one thing you’ll almost never be sorry about, is that you tried.
Build your resilience
By understanding that you’ll find change difficult, you can manage the way forward. “I’m just going to do it anyway!” might need to be your new mantra. Change will make us all feel uncomfortable; if you wait until you feel OK to make changes it possibly won’t happen and you could miss out on a fantastic opportunity. Be brave, know that you’ll feel uncomfortable and when you can, do it anyway! Resilient people make just as many mistakes as everyone else, they just bounce back well and try something different if things aren’t going to plan. Resilience can be developed, it’s not an innate characteristic and I’ll bet that if you look back at your life there are heaps of times when you’ve shown fantastic resilience. You’ve just forgotten about them.
Take some time to think back. Think about your resilient times; your struggles and successes, and the emotions connected with those times. All of those things make you who you are today. Re-connect with the pride, happiness, amazement, delight, wonder and strength you felt as you worked hard and achieved great things. You’ve survived until now and there’s no reason why you can’t thrive into the future if you manage your mindset, treat yourself kindly and keep moving forward. The pandemic has changed the world for all of us and ripped us from our comfort zones. But you’re surviving this despite your discomfort and that’s the ultimate proof that you can do it. Anything’s possible now!
Karen Warren is a Personal Development Specialist and the owner of KW Inner Strength.
You can get in touch with Karen via her website here