Change, change, change…
The presence of COVID-19 over the last few months has generated much fear and compassion in the world. It has also resulted in much change as well. Those changes span how we work, how we gather, and how we see ourselves. For many, these changes have exposed fear, doubt, anger, and ignorance. For others, it has brought opportunities, new skills, strength, and a sense of connection. Why has this been the response? Is it due to business models that were never designed to include crises, is it due to greed, desires for power, or being uncomfortable in our own bodies and emotions?
It is all due to how we process Change. What is the mindset (Fixed or Growth) we operate from when the constant presence of change ebbs and flows in our lives?
A Fixed Mindset is involved with the feeling of fear and strife that we see expressed now as a reaction to Change. Much of how the world has been normalized in our lives has been centered on aversion to loss and subtraction. We must avoid anything that will cause discomfort. The process of Change is experienced as a threat, harm, accountability, and loss. In this mindset, fear and reaction is the best response to Change’s presence.
The Growth Mindset sees the opposite. It sees Change as an opportunity. That things can be different and not always bad. The process of adaptation isn’t a threat to who we are. It is a continuation of that which is already going on. So let’s move with it, not against it. We will still be here after Change has finished. In the meanwhile, there may be discomfort. The Change that happens doesn’t equal harm. Thusly, we can respond to the Change from a place of long-term choices and well-being.
So what are ways we can function from a growth mindset and work with and/or accept Change?
1.Ask ourselves what is being changed?
2.How many things/ideas/processes are being changed (beyond the surface level which is easily seen)?
3.How how did I come to be connected to what is being changed? Was it due to something or someone changing before this?
4.What are the potential things I gain from this?
5.When I have accepted change in the past, how have things been easier?
Whether it is the change of a job, the ending of a relationship, the beginning of a relationship, or a change in responsibilities, we are always making some form of transition. Transition is another word for change. This will always cause greater mental stress when we act from a Fixed Mindset. Operating from a Growth Mindset does not deny that there may be mental stress, but it opens us to the possibility for greater gains. How we have been taught and choose to experience this forms part of the process we explore when addressing healing in mental health. This is part of the practice that a mental health professional can assist you with, so that you may thrive, grow, and enjoy life.