Do you know what I love the most about life? You stumble upon treasures in the most unexpected places when you’re least expecting it.
I learned a wonderful lesson from my friend, though it was not intended for me at that time. But even today, I take all important decisions based on that valuable lesson. A couple of years back, a friend (let’s call her Neha) and I decided to catch up with another friend of mine (let’s call her Deepika). We were catching up with each other’s lives. It was a usual girls gang chit chat.
Conversations then shifted to work and family. Neha’s family was finalizing the dates for her wedding. While she was excited about the wedding, she seemed disappointed about how things were going at work. She was toying with the idea of quitting her job before her wedding and then taking a month’s break before finding and joining a new job. While I felt it would be good for her to start over, I wanted to understand what was so bad that couldn’t be fixed and made her want to quit. Before I could ask any questions, Deepika said, ‘Don’t quit your job now.’
Neha was taken aback. She reiterated that it was going to be a break and her intention was to get back to work as soon as possible. Deepika then clarified that Neha was already going to experience a big change in her life – a new family and a new household. Deepika said it would take some time to get used to living life in a different way and that she shouldn’t change all aspects of her life completely. She added that, whether or not she liked her workplace was a different question – but she at least knew what she had to handle. Considering that work and her family were the two main aspects of her life, she shouldn’t make changes to both the aspects of her life at the same time. She would need at least one familiar environment (either at home or at work) at any point in time. She advised Neha to get settled in her new place before quitting and taking up another job. I am not sure if Neha found this advice useful, but I found it extremely useful and follow it till date.
As much as we get bored about our monotonous routine, we appreciate it when things go wrong and everything goes for a toss. I’m all for changes and pushing myself out of my comfort zone, but unless there is a sudden development or an emergency, I like my changes to be gradual. From then on I ensure I have at least one comfortable space to be around, at least to vent out my frustrations while I get used to the other environment. Trust me, as someone who has been through her share of career jumps and changes in personal life – this is great advice to follow.
After getting back home, I tried to find out the major components of my life. It was easy to find out that- Family, Friends, Work, Hobbies and Personal care were the main aspects. From then on, I’ve never made changes to more than 2 aspects of my life at the same time. Some changes are beyond you – in my case, it was my friends. Most of my friends from college and work moved to different cities and countries. As someone who always had a big network of friends, It was disappointing to lose them all one after the other. Thankfully, I had my family around me. Even when my parents were abroad and I had to manage by myself, I found comfort in work and my friends. When my work wasn’t going well, I always had my family and friends to empathize with me. I hope you get the drift. Most of the time the changes are beyond your control, so ensure you don’t make any more changes to the other components of your life at the same time.
Whenever we see someone and get inspired by them – whether it is the way we want ourselves to look or the activities that we want to take up – we tend to make many changes in a short span of time. If we don’t plan it well and give ourselves time to adjust and adapt to the new routine, we would end up going back to where we started in no time. That’s why, it’s sensible to keep motivation aside, define our intention, devise a plan and add it regularly to your routine and not be overwhelmed by many new changes and give it up altogether.
Remember, one step at a time!
Do you have any strategy to deal with intentional and sudden changes?
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