Our world is filled with change … all the time! Finding time to deal with the sudden changes that can present themselves to us is a difficult challenge that is compounded by the fact that, by definition, we are unprepared for them!
What can you do to prepare? You can establish a base so that when the unexpected occurs, you have a toolbox of skills and responses to draw from.
Here are 5 tips to help you keep sudden change from totally disrupting your time choices, your ability to take care of yourself … and manage your life.
1. Remember that your time choices, and the values that drive them, are yours. Even when your established priorities need to take a back seat to the urgent choices you may need to make, remember that the time choices remain yours. The more you can own your choices, the less you will feel victimized by your situation.
2. Establish a habit of defining options. Ensure your resiliency by defining options for each of your daily priorities. This gives you a wider repertoire of priorities, should you to flex in light of something unexpected.
3. Explore adjustments in your personal and work schedules that you can make quickly if you need to. Flexibility is a key skill here! Sometimes our daily list of activities and priorities becomes inflexible. This can be disastrous if sudden change occurs. You can introduce flexibility into your daily habits around time by changing your routines and assessing your reactions to these changes. It’s really helpful and important to pay attention to this when you aren’t being forced into it by circumstances!
4. Re-examine your personal boundaries. In times of sudden change, your usual personal boundaries may have to flex. Take a few minutes and reflect on those you’ve established. Write them down. This keeps them from becoming unconscious or rigid. By remaining aware of your usual boundaries, you are more easily able to adjust them when sudden change occurs.
5. Be willing to tell others about any sudden changes that affect your usual time choices. When sudden change occurs, don’t bottle it up inside. Family, friends and coworkers only can understand, accept, and support you if you alert them with at least a brief description of any sudden change.© Copyright 2010 Paula Eder, Ph.D.