How Do You Deal With Change? 3 Common Ways

People deal with change in different ways. Some people welcome it with open arms and optimism while others shy away from change, wanting nothing to do with it.

During my time coaching clients, consulting and speaking on stage, I keep seeing the three same reactions to change come up time and time again. These reactions are so prevalent that they even impact how I teach, train and consult about these things.

The three common ways that people deal with change can say a lot about them and how they make decisions in their everyday lives. But what people might not realize is that, with practice and will power, it is possible to shift from one of these reactions to another. You might even find that you often respond in one way, but you also resonate with another and that’s fine too.

I always say that self-awareness is the most powerful tool we have as achievers. When we’re self-aware, we can learn to pause before immediately reacting to something, understand the root cause of why we want to react that way and if necessary, change our reaction.

So, what are the three common ways that people deal with change, and why are they so important? Let’s find out!

1. Adopt

Let’s paint a picture…

You have a goal to lose weight. Then, you come across someone, perhaps it’s a celebrity on TV, an influencer on social media or a life coach, and they share how they lost weight. They show before and after pictures and your jaw almost hits the ground. You want the same results for yourself, so what do you do?

You ADOPT their weight-loss strategy.

If you’re an ‘adopter,’ you’ll likely say things like, “If it worked for them, it’ll work for me!” If this sounds like you, you’re probably wondering what’s wrong with reacting this way?

Well, it can be both positive and negative. It’s great that you were so inspired by someone else’s actions and results that you’re ready to go and achieve the same for yourself. However, you have to take a more critical approach because unfortunately, there’s rarely a ‘one size fits all’ solution to anything.

What works for someone else might not work in the same way for you. Although it’s easy to get swept up in the excitement of it all, you really need to take time to think about what’s best for YOU.

When you’re too quick to adopt, you can easily end up adopting too many things from too many people. You’ve got the classic ‘shiny object syndrome’ and you want to do so many things that you end up disappointed because you can’t possibly replicate everyone’s results no matter how hard you try.

So, the next time you see something that you want to adopt, ask yourself, will this strategy, tactic or approach work for ME? If not, move along!

How Do You Deal With Change? 3 Common Ways


2. Attack

People who tend to attack as their first initial response will look at a weight-loss transformation or whatever it may be and say something like, “I read a study where it proved that the Keto diet is garbage,” etc.

‘Attackers’ immediately dismiss or disregard a person’s success and feed themselves with excuses as to why it won’t work for them (or anyone else for that matter!).

They are in a habit of firing excuse after excuse. They might see someone’s success story and their immediate response is to say things like, “If I made that kind of money, I could do that too,” or, “If I could afford a personal trainer, I could lose weight that fast too,” etc.

Instead of taking time to find out how someone made that transformation, whether it’s someone who paid off a lot of debt, bought a nice house, lost weight and so on, they focus on reasons why they can’t.

It’s a hard habit to break but it is possible. If you tend to attack as your immediate response to change, you can work on changing your mindset, becoming more self-aware and practicing other responses.

3. Adapt

In this case, someone who adapts tends to look at what has worked for someone else and instead of jumping in headfirst or attacking them, you investigate. You look at what you are willing, ready and able to do and you apply that to your own life.

You ADAPT to a goal strategy in whatever way that works for you.

You learn from others and accept that while you may not achieve the exact same results as that other person, you can adapt and apply some of those principles to what you’re trying to accomplish.

When you’re adept at adapting, you’re more self-aware because you realize that you can learn a lot from others. You don’t need to copy them every step of the way, but you know what steps you can take to move you closer to your end goal.

Stop fighting for your limitations!

A lot of the time, we use one (or more) of these reactions as a means to stay exactly where we are. We do this either consciously or subconsciously so that we can hold onto our limitations.

The truth is that when you fight for your limitations, you get to keep them.

Nobody can adapt for you. If you want to fire excuses and complain about why you can’t do something, you’ll stay right where you are.

I challenge you to stop fighting for your limitations and start fighting for higher expectations!

The next time you see somebody achieve something that you want for yourself, don’t come up with excuses for why you can’t do the same. Instead, ADAPT your self-awareness and think of how you can adapt so that you CAN achieve your goals.

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