The world is in a constant state of flux, you know that?
As a whole, we seem to be resistant to that idea. We want things to last forever. We want to hang onto stuff just because “that’s the way things always have been”. It’s not because certain ways are better – it’s just what we’re comfortable with.
Don’t get me wrong: some things should last forever. Marriage should be a lifelong commitment, for example.
But today, careers change a lot more often than they don’t. The way you manage your money can be adapted as you see how trends develop in your spending habits. I change the way I manage my workflow every 3-4 weeks, for some reason.
A lot of the disappointment and frustration and stress of the world seems to come from unexpected change. And yet, they are changes that are so common, the warning signs should have been noticed way before the ball dropped.
And yet we panic when:
- We lose our jobs, even though we’ve seen it happen to thousands of people.
- Facebook changes its site design, even though they do that every other year (minimum) and we’ve always adapted to it.
- Our significant other breaks up with us, even though the telltale signs were probably there months ago but we were too self-centered to notice them.
- Something expensive breaks, leaving us stuck with an expensive repair bill, even though we should be prepared for it, financially.
- Your favorite TV show gets cancelled, even though ratings have been in the toilet for a while now (guilty of this one like crazy).
And so on.
Life needs less panic and more flexibility. Less “You never did THAT before…!” and more “What made you decide to make that change?” Less ignorance and stubbornness and more education and openness to new ideas. You don’t have to accept every idea that comes along, but you should listen to it.
And how do we handle big changes? As the Boy Scouts say, “Be prepared.” Work on a side project of some kind that could make you some money. Have an emergency fund in place for repairs and to bridge the gap between jobs, if necessary. Stop hinging your life on Facebook. Own things that you can afford to maintain. Enjoy the great episodes of a TV show that you actually got.
Roll with the punches. Life is going to throw you an endless amount of curveballs. Your only other option to avoid them is to not live anymore. You can’t shield yourself from them, so start figuring out ways of adapting to life’s changes. You’ll be better off for it.
Not only that, but seek out changes. Do things you never thought you’d try. Here are just a few things I’ve been able to do in the past few years that have dramatically increased the quality of my life – and I never thought I would do them:
- Eating healthy foods – and even just have a salad for dinner.
- Attempting to cut back on my sugar intake.
- Cutting cable TV.
- Dedicating a whole night to keeping the TV off.
There are plenty others, but you get the idea. How are you applying change in your life? And how are you going to roll with change when it hits you “suddenly”?