Do you fear change? Do you worry about what the future might bring? Do you hesitate to live with the uncertainty that change could create? Does a fear of change hold you back from moving forward in your life? A fear of change is one of the 10 most common fears, so don’t worry—you’re not alone. And I’m right here with you! It’s natural to feel afraid or skeptical in times of change. But embracing change can yield beautiful results that will embolden you to love the process of change.
Change is inevitable, and while you can’t stop the inevitable, you can transform any change in your life into an opportunity. And one of the results of embracing change is you will naturally befriend your fear so that you are ready for those new opportunities and whatever your future has in store.
People who embrace change and can adapt more easily are better equipped to deal with the unexpected. They can move forward no matter what’s happening around them. They have resilience, and they experience a higher level of peace of mind.
So, how do you become someone who embraces change as an opportunity instead of a threat? It’s time to put fear of change in its place—squash it, master it, befriend it!
Let’s dig into why people fear change, the importance of embracing change, and the strategies you can implement to begin embracing change now and in the years to come.
Why People Fear Change
Change is a constant part of life, but so many of us fear it—it’s natural. Fear of change is actually wired into our DNA.
Change is unsettling; it disturbs patterns in our lives that we’ve gotten used to. Though a fear of change can (and does) happen to all of us, it could occur for a number of reasons. You may be afraid to end an unsatisfying relationship with a partner because you’re unsure of what’s worse—being alone or being with someone who doesn’t see your value. Even if you feel confident in making a personal change, you might be afraid as you change, you may alienate your friends and family. They are used to who you are now—would they accept you if you changed?
As humans, we want to feel safe. We want comfort and consistency. And research shows that our number one human need is connection and belonging. We fear change because it could mean people leaving us. It could mean failure. It could mean an unknown we haven’t even imagined yet. All of that is scary, and it’s understandable. But when fear begins to hold you back from the life you want to live, it’s time for you to break free.
The Importance of Embracing Change
Warning: Tough love coaching moment!
YOU CANNOT AVOID CHANGE. (There. I said it.)
This is a fact. Like the sun will rise each morning and set each night.
Avoiding something you know is happening (or about to), even though you pray it won’t, drains you of your precious time and energy. And you need that energy to have the resilience needed to make the change that’s in your face.
Instead, I invite you to refocus your time and energy on your own needs and desires; it will support you in moving through change with more grace and ease. It will give you a strong foundation that allows for you to experience more resilience on a daily basis.
So why does someone avoid change? Avoiding something means you’re afraid of it. Afraid of facing the unknowable. Where does that fear really come from, and what does it mean for your future? I don’t have time in this article to talk in depth about the origin of fear, but if you’d like to know more, read my article: How To Overcome Fear So It No Longer Controls You.
So let me ask you a few questions to help you gain more clarity about how your fear of change shows up.
Are you so afraid of change that you doubt you could ever change who you are? Do you have trouble trusting yourself to make important decisions? Do you worry about what other people think or how they would see you if you evolved?
Throw all of those doubts away! I am here to support you to make empowering positive changes in your life, and I know if you’re reading this article, you have what it takes to navigate the unpredictable changes that will come your way. You can’t stop your life from changing, but you can learn how to embrace change for good, so you can live the life your soul intended™.
Strategies for Embracing Change
Fear is messy and difficult, and it affects all aspects of our lives. But just because it’s difficult doesn’t mean there isn’t anything you can do. You can break through your fear of change if you are ready and willing to commit to yourself.
I’ll outline a few of my favorite strategies below, but if you’re ready to be proactive about the life YOU create, I recommend my Fear of Change course. My one of a kind program will show you step-by-step how to stop your Fear of Change from deciding your life!
1. Vent in Order to Move Toward a Solution
Complaining gets all of your feelings out, but it's not effective for processing or moving through those feelings. Are you focused on avoiding and resenting the changes occurring around you? Or are you focused on solutions?
That said, venting can help you find the space to accept change. Venting allows you to express your deepest, and sometimes irrational, feelings in a safe environment through dialog with someone you trust. Get those thoughts and feelings out because if you bottle them up, you will explode!
If you have too many feelings, you won’t be able to think straight, which means you won’t be able to identify an effective solution. Venting clears your head so that you’re better able to move forward.
So, how do you do it? First, ask a close friend to be a venting partner. Before you launch into a tirade, ask, “Would you be willing to listen without giving advice or coaching? Is now a good time?” Remember: It’s okay if they say no. They need to be available and feel comfortable with this task. Then, put a time limit on the venting session so that you don't overuse their time or allow yourself to get all riled up.
Here’s how to be a stellar venting partner:
- Don’t offer your wisdom, advice, or opinion
- Keep what you hear confidential
- Maintain objectivity
- Do not take on the issue or emotion
Fully vent within the agreed upon time frame. Get it all out. Why are you worried about the change? What are you afraid of? If you’re a business owner, maybe you’re being forced to adopt new skills or new technologies that you’re intimidated by. Maybe your kids are headed off to college, and you’re not ready for your home to have an empty nest. Or maybe your career is progressing, but you’re afraid of what comes with the added responsibilities.
Get it all out, and remember to breathe!
When your venting time is up, thank your venting partner for their support and move onto another topic. Shift your focus. It’s not up to them to solve your problems—they are just there to listen so you could get it all out. Now that you’ve freed your brain from all those mixed up, wonky, frustrated, angry, or fearful thoughts, you can begin focusing on moving forward with more clarity.
2. Embrace Change as a Growth Opportunity
Losing my mother and father in a matter of seconds was a monumental change in my life that I never expected or planned for. It turned my world upside down, and for many years, all of the pain, denial, blame, and regret ruled who I was and what I thought I could achieve. It took me years to learn how to embrace change and how to make the most of my life ahead.
Out of these horrific changes, I became who I am today. I taught myself one step at a time how to live fearlessly and that never would have happened had I not lived through all of that pain. Would I trade all of these life lessons to undo what happened? ABSOLUTELY! But I know I can’t do that, and I’ve learned the hard way that embracing change is so much better than fighting it or living in fear of it.
Change is an opportunity for self-discovery, growth, and creative magic. How you approach change matters. It’s the difference between letting change lead you or living the life your soul intends. It all comes down to how you view change and how you can turn it into empowering powerful positive change — even if the change is a painful one.
3. Visualize Your Future
Regularly considering your own future will help you prepare for it. Your life will continue to change, but when you consider who you want to be, you can better react to those changes.
This doesn't mean trying to predict the future or worrying about all the ways things could go wrong. Visualizing the future is quite the opposite. It helps you embrace change and prepare for what the future has in store.
Plus, thinking about the future stimulates your creativity and gets you to think outside of your comfort zone! What does your ideal future look like? What are your dreams and desires? What do you want from your life? What changes need to occur for you to get there? What do you want from your career? What does the future of your small business or startup look like? What would it take to get out of your office job and pursue your dream of entrepreneurship?
Look at your life with a whole new perspective—one where anything is possible. Keep an open mind and allow yourself the freedom to imagine the life you’ve always dreamed of. From my experience coaching thousands of people, your dream life isn’t nearly as far away as you think it is.
Embracing Change With Fearless Living
A fear of change is natural, but that fear does not have to control your life. There will always be changes in your life, wanted and unwanted. The key is to learn how to embrace change for good instead of fearing it.
What opportunities does change bring? How can you make the most of a change in your life? What can you learn from these changes? And how are you stronger for persevering and embracing change?
My Fearless You membership program can help you break free of your fear of change. It’s based on decades of learning how to crack the secret code to fear. Sign up for Fearless You, where you’ll learn how to use my Wheel of Fear to live the life your soul intended™. You'll gain access to premium courses and the chance to work with me every month!
I’m always posting new videos, guides, inspiration, stories, and strategies online. Follow me on social media for the latest coaching on befriending fear. I can’t wait for you to join the fearlessly beautiful and supportive Fearless Living community.