Change: Acceptance Is The Hardest Part

My Mom says that my personality was fully formed before I was even born. Nearly two weeks past my due date, in the scorching summer of 1976 (I am a bicentennial baby), I had no interest in leaving the safe harbor of the womb. My Dad even took my Mom bike riding through Central Park to try to induce labor. In the end, it was a dinner of tuna casserole that finally caused her to go into labor – perhaps my distaste of fish and seafood started at a very young age.

I've never been too interested in change. I'm the kind of person who is usually content where they are, craves routine and generally fears too much upheaval and chaos. I sometimes take it to an absurd level. I never actually feel like getting into the shower, but then once I'm in, I don't want to get out.

When I found out this month's word for the Self-Discovery Word by Word series was 'change', I was slightly terrified. How do I write about something that I struggle with every day? (Ah wait, I write about things I struggle with every day all the time!)

The problem with not being comfortable with change is that change is the constant. And change is what provides growth. I may not like it, but I know its importance. Which is why I do crazy things like move to other countries without really knowing anyone. And why although marriage is a terribly risky thing to do, I am willing to take the plunge and try to figure what love really is.

You can face life head on and take things as they come, experiencing them fully, or you can hide away under the blankets grasping onto the fantasy that you can control things and as long as you are able to do that you'll be safe. But that's exhausting.

There are also those who love change – crave it in fact. But I think that can be a problem as well. When we are not prepared to accept life as it is, when we are constantly looking for something better, brighter and different – that elusive thing that will make us happier – it's easy to get caught up in the illusion that what we need to do is change our circumstances, rather than our attitude to life itself.

Unhappy in your relationship? Dump him. Unhappy at work? Switch jobs. Feeling like things aren't complete? Move. I'm not saying that there aren't times to do these things, but it's worth examining our own attitudes to life and whether or not our perception is actually the crux of the problem. Learning that I create the life I have from my own set of thoughts and beliefs was the biggest revelation I've ever had. It's up to me and no one else to make me happy. Not my partner, my job, my friends or even my breakfast (even if it contains bacon!).

I think maybe those who fear change and those who crave it aren't actually that different from each other. Both don't want to accept life as it is – and rightly so, as it's a hard thing to do. But when we accept, we break down the barriers we've created, which ironically, makes life that tiny bit better.

This post is part of the Self-Discovery Word by Word blogger series. Mara, over at Medicinal Marzipan, came up with this month's word. Learn more about participating in Mara’s post and you can also read her excellent post on change here.

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  1. I truly believe reading this has helped me... This very moment I'm faced with a huge (to me, life-changing) decision and I'm stuck. I'm scared. Very scared. So I ran to the change post that Medicinal Marizpan wrote- with all the links. I clicked on yours and your words just melted some of my fears.

    My life is just that- it's MINE. No one else's. I have to make the decisions and if change is something I've been wanting for some time, change is what I need.

    Thank you. Beautifully written. You deserve that bacon-filled breakfast. ;)

  2. @Lori - Thanks for your really nice comment - I'm so glad my post helped. Good luck with your life-changing decision. Please stop back and let us know how things went!

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