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Herriman Journal

Eight ways to combat change fatigue this new year

Jan 05, 2024 09:35AM ● By Holly Curby

Fulfilling something on his bucket list, Peyton Curby traveled to Alaska with his family. (Holly Curby)

We all are no strangers to change. Whether it’s a New Year’s resolution, a shift in our career, alterations in our physical appearance, or even the family dynamics morphing as families grow— children go off to college, loved ones move, and parents age—change is a constant factor in our lives. 

Instincts might be to resist the change or simply feel overwhelmed by it, both of which may be leading indicators of change fatigue.

According to an article by Dr. Lydia Moussa on LinkedIn, change fatigue includes the following symptoms: apathy (disengagement), negativity (cynical or complaining), stress (anxious) and burnout.

Change fatigue can have a significant impact on our lives, from personal disappointments like unrealized dreams to professional challenges like unmet career goals. It's an exhausting experience that can lead to questioning our purpose and identity. However, it's during these times of change that self-reflection becomes vital. The following resources can help us take a look at our lives in hopes of beginning to understand our passions, needs, and ultimately, our unique purpose.

1. The love language test. This is a concept of Gary Chapman’s where in his book “The 5 Love Languages” he helps us understand how we receive love (physical touch, quality time, words of affirmation, gifts, or even acts of service). This tool helps us understand how we feel appreciated and loved, as well as how we tend to show appreciation and love to others. This test is helpful in any relationship from coworkers and friends, to children and spouses. Learn more about the love languages on Holly’s Highlights podcast Season 3 Episode 3.

2. Personality tests. Personality tests such as 5 Voices, Strength Finders, Myers-Briggs, and Disc help us put a name to our behaviors and inherit traits and passions. This could be understanding you are an introvert and therefore help give you some ideas on how to engage at a social gathering, to even the importance of setting boundaries in balancing such socials with much-needed alone time to refresh and recharge. Personality tests can also help you identify your strengths and how to use them in careers, teams and personal goal setting. 

3. Spiritual gifts. From administration, giving, and leadership to service, ministry or teaching, if you are a person of faith this can be a valuable tool in every aspect of your life, career and volunteer work. Keep in mind this is not the fortune teller of what you need to do—it is more of a guide as to what comes naturally to you. Local churches will often offer spiritual tests, or you can visit giftstest.com or sdrock.com.

4. Bucket list. According to a study from Stanford, bucket lists can help you “live a life with hopes and aspirations.” They identify values, goals, milestones and experiences as all having significance in both reflection and identification as to what your lifetime will include. When making a bucket list you might see a common theme that can help you create focus in pushing forward toward what you want in life whether it be job-related, relationship-wise or simply helping motivate you to identify “What’s next?” 

5. Dreams. As we navigate the changes in life, it’s essential to reignite some of our childhood dreams. Have you wanted to travel? Take part in certain activities or accomplishments? Be in a certain profession? Permit yourself to tap into your inner child and dream. What part of those dreams can you start implementing or pursuing today, and what’s stopping you now from pursuing them?

6. Goals. When we get in a rut of change we can find ourselves going down a spiraling path, but if we have a goal set before us—something to achieve, to work toward, to look forward to reaching—we are more apt to make progress in living a more authentic and fulfilling existence. In five years you can either look back and see you are still in the same spot, or you can look back and see even a few things accomplished that got you a step further to reaching your goals. Write down some goals that are specific and attainable as well as dates to reach them by—then go for it. Download my free “Get it Done Goal Planner” on hollycurby.com/resources or check out Holly’s Highlights podcast Season 2 Episode 1 regarding goal setting in a new year.

7. Value/priorities. What is important to you? And where does that rank in your priorities? Once we identify our values and our priorities, it can help us ensure our actions align with our authentic selves. This can help us understand what boundaries should be placed and therefore help us live a more fulfilled life of purpose. Season 3 Episode 26 on Holly’s Highlights podcast can help us unpack more on boundary setting to protect these values and priorities. 

8. Personal Mission statement. After you’ve looked at the results from your love language, your personality, your spiritual gifts, your bucket list, dreams, goals, values, and priorities then you can better answer questions such as: Who am I? What’s my purpose? What’s next? Check out Holly’s Highlights podcast Season 3 Episode 15 for assistance on how to do a family mission statement. Next time change fatigue hits, this personal mission statement can help you navigate through the changes so that you keep in alignment with what matters to you.

Amidst life’s constant changes, these resources help us align our actions with our true selves all while embracing a growth mindset, trying new things, challenging our perspectives, exploring our passions, forgiving ourselves of any regrets, having a grateful heart, turning our pain into purpose, accepting our flaws, and believing in ourselves so that we can combat succumbing to the fatigue of change.

Learn more on Holly’s Highlights podcast, available wherever you listen to podcasts such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pandora, Google Podcasts, Tune-In, and at www.hollycurby.com

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