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The word change evokes anxious feelings. No doubt we are all creatures of habit. Even those who look for adventure do so in a habitual way. Habit comes from a need for familiarity, which by nature’s standards, is a must for survival. All animals feel safer in an environment they know, can predict and are fully aware of. Place any person or animal in a new environment and the anxiety hits. Now not all people deal with change the same way and the levels of anxiety are dealt with differently. Those who are successful in life in achieving their goals seem to make the most of their opportunities, and seem to embrace change in a positive empowering way. How is that possible with so many unknowns that we have to deal with?

            Consider this question. When do you achieve the most in your life? When you are always in your comfort zone or when you explore and push yourself? The truth is that when you set a goal, you are planning for a major change and getting yourself ready to embark on a journey that helps you get to that goal. The problem is along the way we get complacent as we get bogged down with things that drain us, and then we find ourselves staying in a zone that is not our goal, but we succumb to its comfort and familiarity, and our anxiety levels drop. And along with that, our ambitions disappear. And when asked, we come up with different excuses that range from no time to other issues or work or family matters. Is it any wonder that Einstein’s definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again while expecting different results? That is what we ultimately do. We hope to get to our goals without the anxiety of change and with the familiarity of our status quo. Good luck!

            Have you ever heard of an explorer who remained in his or her place? The truth is change is not only encouraged, it is absolutely needed. Without change, we would all be dead, and so would the animals on this planet. But pushing ourselves to achieve and be more will generate anxiety. And that anxiety, my friends, is absolutely needed. In a recent study I conducted with experts in the field of human behavior, I asked about the secret to successful human beings who maintain their weight loss. Universally, they all said that a certain level of anxiety is absolutely needed to push us forward and not make us comfortable and complacent (there is that word again).

            Anxiety comes from places within us that can be traced to events in our lives usually. So, one of the best ways to tackle the anxiety of change is to try and figure out where it is coming from and why. Once that is figured out, then the rest becomes easier. The other way to help you is preparation. Preparing makes you less susceptible to “surprises”, and decreases anxiety. This is easier said than done and this is where most people need help and are coached. Other ways to help is to seek support and help from those close around you and you know will support you in a good way. No reason for you to go at the new endeavor alone, and with a group of friends, things become that much easier and confidence increases.

            Change is good. Change is needed. Change is key to life. Change is a challenge, and that is what gives us a chance to reach our goals, to feel alive and to reach our true potential. The anxiety is needed and necessary. And for that, it needs to be welcomed. For without it, we would stay where we are. What goal is ever achieved when you stay in the same place?