Adapting to Workplace Change

Change. It’s an unavoidable matter that we encounter in life. Sometimes we look forward to it, and other times it is challenging and unexpected. New policies and procedures, organizational restructuring, reductions in the workforce, mergers, and worker relocations are among the many changes in the workplace that can cause uncertainty and stress. So how do you deal with change? Here are seven tips for coping during a time of change or transition:

Practice self-care.

Making sure to take care of yourself is crucial during a transitional time. Self-care can be as simple as getting plenty of sleep, maintaining a healthy diet, exercising, engaging in leisure activities, and spending time with family and friends. Self-care allows you to recharge and better respond to stress.

Maintain a positive attitude.

Negative feelings are normal during times of change. Use positive self-talk to remind yourself of things that are going well, things you are looking forward to, or things that are positive from change. If there are opportunities to volunteer for tasks or projects that support the change, it can be a great way to get engaged and be a part of the transition process.

Be open about potential challenges.

Don’t suppress feelings, rather be honest about your fears and the challenges you see, while keeping it professional. Discuss questions and concerns with your supervisor. They may be able to clarify details for you, or you may point out a challenge that was previously unseen due to your unique perspective.

Stay focused and productive.

Often with organizational change, your daily job duties will not be different immediately. Staying actively engaged in your day-to-day responsibilities can help distract yourself from stress and worry about the bigger picture, especially when things are uncertain.

Reframe your thinking.

Although it is natural to want to fight change, it can be more beneficial to reframe your thoughts in acceptance of the new normal. Don’t get so caught up in resisting change that you miss possibilities. Think of change as an opportunity. What can you learn? How can you grow from this experience?

Rise to the challenge.

Viewing change as an exciting new challenge instead of a problem or obstacle can support a can-do mindset and focuses your energy on adapting and succeeding in the new environment. How you respond to change can make a big impact on your success. Don’t let fear hold you back from facing a new challenge.

Be patient and kind to yourself.

Change may cause you to feel a wide range of emotions. Be patient and kind with yourself. You may experience waves of differing emotions from excited to scared to angry to sad as you process the transition. Allow yourself to express feelings in a positive, professional, and healthy way. It’s important to find outlets, such as your self-care techniques, to manage emotions in an appropriate way.

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