How to Deal with a Negative Reaction to Change

Change is inevitable

It’s OK, your negative reaction to change is normal. Take a breath and relax. That said, you can’t avoid it. Even when you are in full blown denial. You are still changing. From the moment you’re conceived until well after you die. Up to and including the moment your body returns to earth in terms of minerals, proteins, byproducts, etc. – worm food. You are changing and you are facing change. Day in and day out. With each and every breath.



Not if I can help it!

Denial is the most detrimental and also the most common negative reaction to change. I get it, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. With one little exception – this is your life. And your negative reaction to change is going to make it much harder to get to your new normal.  It’s all about preparation, change and adaptation, evolution if you will. I know you’re fine. And you’ll continue to be fine – until you’re not. Preparing for and accepting change is like living in California, knowing the “Big One” is coming. It’s going to happen without warning and if you’re not prepared when it knocks you off your foundation, you’re going to be in a world of hurt. And it’s going to take more of your resources to fix it than if you had prepared for it.



Negative reaction to change is similar to the stages of grief, there’s anger and some other stuff…

While you may be in denial (and are likely not happy that I’m repeatedly pointing this out – that’s actually good, it’s the next step), this phase is most likely an unconscious response. A knee jerk reaction for one of many reasons. You may not be noticeably unhappy or unfulfilled right now. Or you may even be aware that something needs to change. Just not you. And certainly not your circumstances. Because within this place in your life you may not see a need to fix or change anything. You’re fine.



You don’t have to like it or accept it (consciously) you just need to be aware of it

Just take time to be aware of how you’re feeling, your emotions, especially apathy, frustration, fear, impatience, feelings of depression or anxiety. Observe yourself to see if you become preoccupied with details rather than on creating momentum. Pay attention to the types of conversations you are having. Are they about holding on to circumstance, referencing the “good old days” or overly nostalgic in tone? These are clues that you are change averse. And are likely working hard at maintaining status quo or trying to get things back to “the way they used to be.” And it’s not healthy.


Trust me, we’ve all been there at some place in our lives. I’ve been there several times. Hell, I’m still there in at least one aspect of my health currently. I’m perimenopausal and for the love-of-God-and-all-things-holy it’s frikken called “THE CHANGE” and I’m fighting it. 



Change is hard and it can be hard to accept, but I promise it’s worth it on the other side (I even have a graph to prove it)







If you find that you are in denial, give yourself time to adjust as well as remembering your motivation for considering change in your life and / or business if you asked for it. Either way, anticipate that you will need a little care in experiencing this disruption to your world and talk with trusted friends, colleagues, a coach or mentor to enlist their perspective, tools, strategies and support. This is most especially important if they’ve traversed the path you’re currently on. They may not have the absolute solution you seek, but they likely have a valuable perspective to share. Listen to their wisdom. Learn from their experience. You can live the life you really want, you can embrace change. Hell, when you get good at it, in some circumstances, you can even get ahead of it. And that’s a powerful place to be.



How prepared are you to deal with change? Are you in need of change in your life? Would a bit of change make things easier in the long run? Take the quiz and find out…