3 Lessons That Changed The Way I Handle Change
Change. They say it’s the only constant but all I knew, it felt like hell.
The heart breaking, nerve wracking, crazy confused type of change.
The last few years have been characterised by transition for me. Changing businesses, getting divorced, moving house four times (including moving interstate), and travelling overseas alone for the very first time. Whoa!
Throughout all these transitions, I’ve learned so much about how to cope with change. And for the better.
Here are three particular lessons that have helped me navigate change with grace and ease.
In the days following the end of my twelve-year relationship, quite frankly, I was a hot mess. My head was full of fear, doubt and decisions that hurt my brain.
Giving myself permission to stop everything and focus on soothing my nervous system was vital for getting through those first few weeks.
If you’re going through a tough transition, focus as much as possible on the activities that are soothing to you. Allow yourself the time and space to slow down and stay calm.
I focused on the simple pleasures that brought me joy and tranquility. Meditation, writing music, journaling and spending time in nature with good friends. These small but sustainable activities helped to balance out the emotional turbulence and kept me grounded.
I’ll be honest. Patience is not my forté. As a recovering control freak, I like to know everything that’s happening well in advance. But life isn’t like that. We can’t always know what’s around the corner and I had to make peace with that.
Learning to give things time to heal, to settle and unfold in their own timing was a vital lesson.
After I moved interstate, I missed my family and friends more than I anticipated. I wasn’t sure I’d made the right decision. I felt lost and isolated and on more than one occasion, I cried myself to sleep.
Once I realised it would simply take time to find my feet, I eased up on the self doubt and started exploring my new town with curiosity. Surprisingly, the more patience I gave myself and the process of transition, the quicker I felt at home.
I have a strong, regular meditation practice. But when the turbulence of transition starts, it’s easy for it to fall by the wayside. Ironically, this is the exact time that staying mindful and present is the most beneficial.
Before I left for my first solo overseas adventure, I was really nervous. I worried about getting lost. I worried for my safety as a woman out on her own. I worried about being a stranger in a strange land and not being able to read Finnish street signs.
Worried about jet lag or missing a flight or just about everything I could think of – I fretted about it.
But all worry is in the future.
The easiest and quickest way to get back into the present moment was to mentally describe my surroundings. What can you see? What can you hear? What can you feel? What can you smell? This inner dialogue, coupled with some deep breathing short circuits the spinning wheels and brings you back into the present moment.
And you know what? When I stopped future tripping and stayed in the present moment – everything was fine. I was fine.
Even during the inevitable challenges that travelling brings, it was much easier to make decisions, stay level headed and problem solve when I was present.
The whole trip was such a joy, I ended up extending it by 6 weeks. In fact, I loved Finland so much that I’m going back in July 2016.
And I know that if I give myself permission to stay calm, be patient and present – it will be one more change that I can navigate gracefully.
Thanks for reading
Tahlee Rouillon is music composer extraordinaire at Sonesence [http://www.sonesence.com]. She offers peace seekers an easy way to achieve calm with a sonic shortcut called meditones.
After going through many difficult changes, Tahlee created The Gentle Transition [http://www.sonesence.com/the-gentle-transition/] for other sensitive souls struggling with change (who want to feel a whole lot better).
She also creates bespoke meditation music for other wellness entrepreneurs, and hangs out on Instagram [https://instagram.com/sonesence_music] a lot.