Coming out of lockdown and embracing the ‘new normal’ is bringing up real fears & anxieties. There is a fear of catching the virus, as many more people are venturing out again, using public transport, shopping etc. For those that suffer with social anxiety it’s the social aspect of coming out of lockdown. For people who are more introverted or are not naturally at ease around others, being at home has been a welcome relief. All of the normal everyday pressures of life and having to interact and mix with others have been avoided.  Understandably people are also nervous about having to work in a different way and there are some real fears about job security.

Here Are Some Mindset Tips for Coping with Change;

1) You’ve survived change before!

Remember that you’ve dealt with change before and you will do it again! Make a note of all of the times that changes have happened in your life up to now. Realise that you dealt with these changes and maybe even thrived afterwards. Maybe you voluntarily changed something in your life or maybe change happened to you, but you coped with it and you will again.

2) Use positive language.

If you’re dreading doing something, instead of saying things to yourself like “I don’t want to do this” or “This is so scary.” Tell yourself  “ I’m choosing to do this.” “ It’s good to do this”.  If change is happening to you, tell yourself “I have incredible coping skills.” “ I’m choosing to feel good about change.” “I’ve dealt with change before and I’m strong and resilient.” “ I will deal with challenges easily & naturally.” Repeat these words often & notice how your mindset shifts &  you feel more comfortable with change.

3) Use the power of visualization.

Visualization is such a powerful tool that we all have at our disposal. The truth is the brain doesn’t differentiate between ‘real’ & ‘imaginary’. So if you imagine or visualize good things happening the brain processes it as if it’s actually happening. Afterwards the brain actually counts it as a memory and will focus you more on similar things happening in the future. It makes so much sense to visualize what you want instead of what you don’t want. Ask yourself what is it that you fear the most, and train your brain to imagine the opposite happening. For example, if you’re afraid that your first day back in the office will be a disaster, imagine having a really great day, connecting with others and feeling really motivated to achieve your tasks for the day etc. You’ll be amazed at how you start to look forward to the day confidently and expect to cope with it easily.

4)  “Do the thing you fear and the death of fear is certain.”- Mark Twain.

The mind loves what is familiar, so make the action you fear as familiar as possible (by doing it as often as you can) and the fear will disappear. This also applies to change, it may feel uncomfortable at first but as it becomes more familiar the fear will dissipate.

I hope these tips & ideas help you to deal with and adapt to any change that is happening in your life.

Becca Teers 

This article first appeared in the July issue of SE22.