Madeleine Eames

- Psychotherapist
- Mindfulness Teacher

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Change Sucks… or Does It? How to Make it Easier

In this last 2 weeks there has been massive change in my life. New city, new home, new work, new sushi restaurant, new school…

I personally thrive on change. I love the new, the uncertain and exploring new territory both within myself as I rise to new challenges and exploring novelty in the external world.

However, I chose this change. That is not always the case. It is a very different story when change is thrust upon you in an unexpected way in your health, employment, a computer breakdown (common!), a loss, a conflict. When you think about it, change always involves a loss of some type, a loss of the old to the new. AND, everyday we are experiencing this in different ways.

It’s not the change that is so important to talk about. It’s how we relate to it. Any time I see someone struggle, it is about change of some type. Or rather, resistance to change. A change in mental health, an injury, a death, a divorce. It can also be the stress of a positive change… a marriage, a new home, planning a trip!

We are always changing. Our cells are dying and rejuvenating. Our bones are re-building. Our breath is always moving air. Our minds are thinking. This moment as it is has never, ever come before and will never come again exactly like this.

The problem arises when we expect things to remain the same. We expect relationships to be stable when they are, by their nature, unstable. Our bodies age and we fight to keep them young. Our children struggle and we want them to be happy. Our parents or loved ones die and it’s painful.

Think of how much change has already happened today. Where do you resist it?

Coming to accept change means this: accepting this moment as it is, even if it sucks. Allowing yourself to feel whatever is here.

Fear? Let it be there. Anxiety? Loosen your grip on it so you can move with it and problem solve if necessary.

But whatever you do, don’t try and hold up the dam of change by putting your finger in the dyke. Let the water flow or you will either crash or burn out from exhaustion.

How do you let others experience change? Do you try to save them from the discomfort or fix their pain?

My son is experiencing the change of a new school which is difficult at the best of times. he came home one day this week feeling upset, sad, frustrated, and confused. He couldn’t find his classes and felt alone and exhausted. I so wanted to rip all those emotions out and replace them with calm and peace, but the more I tried to talk him down and problem solve, the more agitated he became. Finally I stopped and let him rip. He peaked, relaxed, had a restful full night’s sleep and woke up refreshed and ready to go.

You cannot heal something that isn’t yours.

You can only be a strong, loving container for the healing to happen in expression of feelings. When your container is full, you have to create strong boundaries and set limits for your own health in order to ever navigate change.

Resistance is futile.

Resistance IS anxiety. Accepting that change is constant is the key to peace.

Acceptance does not mean you like it. Acceptance does not mean giving up.

Acceptance means you embrace what is happening, because it is here now and to resist reality is insanity.

Yes, you might need skills to calm your nervous system. Our nervous systems and minds can see change as threatening even when it’s not. Using the breath and standing in your body and using your mind are keys you can learn to support you.

Feel first, then act. Or not.

Often I feel the need to react, to jump in, to call someone, to write an email. If this comes from fear or anxiety, I stop.

Even if it’s just for 5 minutes. Then I see if it’s necessary, and most often the answer is NO. I need to accept it let it go.

Somehow life takes care of most things. Especially other people.

Breathe and recognize yourself in all the change you have gone through. Some welcome, some very unwelcome.

But you are still here, breathing through it all. Now, what kind of change can you effect in your limitless life today that really, truly makes you feel alive?

If you are ready for a big shift to let go of the fear of your small self and step into your beautiful, authentic true self (yes, you have one!) then send me a message and let’s talk!

Lots of love to you all,

Madeleine

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4 thoughts on “Change Sucks… or Does It? How to Make it Easier”

  1. I enjoyed your message. Sometimes I struggle with change and yet enjoy change.
    My huge struggle is with insomnia, falling asleep at night is so difficult. I feel it’s a mental issue and trying so hard to overcome it.

    • Debbie, oh yes that is when anxiety seems to visit us in our busy minds! Have you tried 4-7-8 breathing? That is working up to a count of 4-inhale, 7-hold your breath and 8-exhale. This relaxes the nervous system, allowing the body to let go 🙂

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