It seems like I’m always starting fresh this time of the year. There’s something about April that brings out the urge to switch things up and move on to something new, whether that be leaving a job, preparing to move to a different country, starting therapy, or potentially starting a new job. As someone who gets very nervous about change of any kind, this time of the year allows me to revel in it with a little less fear than I’m used to, making the prospect of starting fresh enticing and exhilarating.
This year, like the others before it, I am driven toward the need to start fresh yet again, so I thought that I would discuss a few ways that make the process easier. Change is never easy, but it is necessary and often for the better, so taking it in stride and adjusting it to what makes you still feel slightly more comfortable is important.
1) Have an open mind
I have a hard time accepting that change is coming, but when it does and it feels aligned with my values, I try my best to keep an open mind. Unless your gut is telling you there’s something wrong, you should invite new opportunities and allow yourself to adapt to them.
2) Let yourself get excited
I always have a hard time letting myself be genuinely excited about things, primarily because my anxiety has me in fight or flight mode at all times. But new experiences that you’ve worked hard to attain shouldn’t be feared or downplayed. Let yourself revel in the fact that you’ve achieved something that you haven’t before.
3) Know your limits
While it’s all fine and dandy to say ‘yes’ to every new opportunity that comes your way in order to experience a bit of change, you also have to know your limits. Taking on a plethora of new things isn’t always good and can leave you burnt out and even a bit confused as to what you actually want and the direction you want to head in.
4) Prepare yourself
Once you do feel ready to accept change, it’s important that you begin to prepare yourself for what comes along with it. This could mean lost relationships, a rift in your personal life, or even a completely different direction than what you had in mind for your career. Don’t let yourself be sucker punched by the reality of what it means to let go of the past and start fresh.
5) Try not to look back
This is something I’m guilty of, but it’s very hard for me to let go of nostalgia and focus on the current moment or the future. I always tend to look back at my past and see it as better than it might have been, clouding my judgement of the future and what will make me genuinely happy. Starting fresh means letting go and avoiding the temptation of idealizing time that you can never get back.