It’s 2023, a new year, new you, right? But how do we start over? How do we make the changes in our lives that we crave so much to see?
Change is hard, especially today, where 1 in 3 people are diagnosed with anxiety. I can imagine the other 2 in 3 feel the clutches of anxiety in their lives. The constant need to ‘keep up with the Kardashians,’ to post how happy we are on social media, and to put on a smiling face can be daunting if not downright haunting.
So how do we change when change is scary? When change is unknown? When even the thought of change immobilizes us?
When we stay stuck in a place where the anxiety swirls, this will not help us make the changes we want to see in our lives. All the what-ifs and worst-case scenarios of the unknown will continue to cripple us into not moving forward with our lives.
Get moving. We crumble when we allow the anxiety to swell in our minds and overcome our ability to reason. The weight of the options and their potential downfall compounds the longer we sit in the feelings they bring us.
Do something different. Something physical. Go for a walk. Be artistic. Be spiritual. Write something. Try something new.
You will gain self-confidence every time you follow through on commitments and goals you have set for yourself. Every time you get up, getting up will get easier.
Make a goal to make your bed every morning. Even if you know you’ll end up back in it later. Make it for yourself. Making your bed in the morning begins to tame the chaos of life and the fears of the unknown.
Make a goal to apply for new jobs every day. Jobs that would bring you joy and fulfillment. It’s scary to do new things, but the more you try, the easier they will become. Choosing yourself when the world has told you to put everyone else’s needs first may feel wrong, but you will know what is truly wrong by listening to your gut.
Try something new, a new skill, a new trade, or a new hobby; all of them will teach you more about yourself and help you make decisions in the future. Heck, try some new food even! The more things you try, the more you broaden your horizons and allow new things to come into your life.
“You are never too old to start over. Every day is a chance to make changes to create the life we want.” – Karon Waddell
Change the way you look at the thing you want to change in your life.
Whatever the thing holding you back in life, try looking at it with a third party’s eyes. Also, if it’s anxiety holding you back, ask yourself: What is the worst, best, and most realistic outcome for this situation? Seeing the truth of a situation helps to quell the anxiety and allows us to move forward.
If you’re thinking about going to the gym, instead of thinking about how silly you’re going to look or how other people might judge you, see the truth that everyone there – no matter what they look like – is after the same thing as you = improvement. The reality is that if anyone is looking around judging, that says more about them than anything about you.
If you’re trying to eat better, instead of thinking about what you’re giving up, look at what you’re gaining in making better choices for your body.
Changing how we look at things helps us overcome the problems they present us with. It helps us to see things more clearly instead of through the lens that has kept us immobile.
Take time to look at the changes you want to make and truly WHY you want to make them. Is it to make an ex jealous? Is it because you’re sick and tired of being sick and tired? Why do you want to change? What is the driving force?
Make sure that the reason you’re doing something new is for YOU. Do it to make yourself smile. Do it because you deserve happiness. Do it because you are worth it – no matter what other people have made you feel.
When you start to feel like you can’t or don’t want to continue, remind yourself of how good it will feel when you push through this feeling. When you get up and choose YOU anyway.
Seek gratitude in all things.
Change is scary, but it’s a normal part of life. It’s hard, but everyone goes through it. See the positive in the things that scare you. See the positive in the changes and the challenges. Choose to look at things like “What have I learned from this? What will I learn from this?”
When the overwhelm of change starts to get to you, keep a journal or tabs in your notes to remind you of what you’re succeeding at. Everyone’s journey and needs are different, and it’s essential to realize that what you need for yourself is a little different. It could be affirmations, journaling, mediation, etc. It’s up to YOU to create your ideal self. So do what you need, and choose for yourself.
We tend to let the world creep in, and we let go of the goals we have for ourselves when the weight of our daily lives starts to bear down on us. Remind yourself what and who you’re doing this for, YOU. Remember what you’re gaining. Remember, you deserve this.