Over the last few weeks, I have been in the thick of an extraordinary amount of difficult change, not just the normal stuff that Christmas and the year-end usually (and quite expectedly) brings. This goes well beyond that. All change has an impact, even asked-for or desired change can still put us through our paces. Having strong change muscles can get us through to the other side with energy to engage in our new world.
A few years ago, I was introduced to the SARA model – these are the emotions we experience as we go through any change. It might not be as linear and you might not start from the beginning but processing the change through these emotions is important.
S – is Shock
A – is Anger
R – is Rejection
A – is Acceptance
The faster you feel, process, and move through the faster you can really begin to engage in your new reality. The thing is though, too fast through and you’re not really processing (Pollyanna anyone?) and too slow through can mean wallowing, holding on tight, stuck – delaying the future benefits the change will ultimately bring. I’ve observed myself cycle through eventually getting to Acceptance. Having the awareness of this model has helped to orient me, giving a prompt to shift.
Any change, no matter how small, always brings about an end and this needs to be mourned, appreciated, and let go in order so growth and fresh opportunities can be nurtured.
As we let go and change ourselves, our perspectives and reach for expansion, I love the idea of Being like Bamboo – able to bend but not break; being rooted yet flexible. Our true essence, like the roots of the bamboo, always remains and when we have clarity with our values we can adapt and not break, flexing into our updated way.
Change makes us different from before, it fills us out, adds layers, experiences, wisdom and it broadens our horizons. Change sets us up for our next adventure and our ability to adapt can deepen our inner resources to ensure we thrive as we go.