Terri K. Lankford, LPCS
Maintaining Wellness in the Midst of Change
August tends to bring lots of changes - perhaps you’re having a third quarter review at work, your kids (or you, yourself) are returning to school, or your vacation time is coming to an end. Sometimes we are preparing mentally for the end of the year - the holidays, which are around the corner, usually bring schedule changes, financial planning, travel plans, and getting prepped to host family members in our homes. The last bit of the year is filled with change!
What happens, though, if you’re having a hard time adjusting to a new, big change? Life transitions can be challenging for a number of reasons. One big reason life transitions can be so hard to deal with is the sudden change in schedule. Transitioning back to school means picking up and dropping kids off, extracurricular activities, sports, and more. Changes in your job may bring changes in your schedule. Holiday time means planning around vacations or factoring in spending time with family. It’s easy to fall totally off your schedule, which may bring some anxiety or other hard feelings.
Sometimes, life transitions feel more challenging than they are exciting. Maintaining a schedule is one way to reduce anxiety and keep some stability during a time of change. Use these tips about consistency, inspired by the Wellness Wheel from our past blogs, to keep on track during a life transition!
Do you know how changes impact your emotions? Keep a tracking log, like a mood tracker, to see how your emotions change day-by-day.
When do you have time in your day, at the same time every day, to take ten minutes to connect to your emotions? Put it on your calendar today.
Does your life transition involve a big environmental change, like moving houses or cities? Take a picture of your room or a spot in your room to replicate when you move. That way, at least some part of your environment will feel familiar!
Do you have a schedule to clean, tidy up, or re-arrange weekly? If not, add this to your schedule to maintain a sense of normalcy regarding your home.
Are you aware of when bills are paid, rent is due, and when your paycheck hits the bank? If not, make a budget calendar to assess your financial schedule.
Does your life transition impact your financial flow, such as getting a new job? Take a moment today to revise your budget calendar, as well as factor in any other changes you need to.
Do you have time every week to do your hobby? If not, schedule an hour into your week to pursue your hobby and maintain normalcy in your big change.
Do you have any quarterly goals involving intellectual pursuits, like learning something new for your job or reading a certain number of books? Plus this into your schedule!
How does work impact your schedule? If you aren’t sure, make a clear schedule regarding work for the next two weeks.
Is your work getting busier with the end of the year approaching? Write down what you need to get done daily and weekly at the beginning of each week.
Do you make time each day to move? If not, set an alarm today to get up and stretch once. Do this daily.
What hobby do you have that includes gentle or joyful movement? If you don’t have one, find a movement you love doing, like dance, yoga, or walking, and make a goal to do it once a week.
How often do you put meetings with friends on your schedule? Would you like more, or less? Make that adjustment today.
Do you feel you’re not getting enough connection with others? Reach out to your social support system and set up monthly meetings, calls, or video conferences to stay connected.
Do you have a spiritual practice? Do you incorporate it daily? What are your daily practices?
If you have no daily practices, what ritual, action, or intention can you add for your spiritual practice at least once a week?
We hope this blog gave you some goals regarding keeping a healthy, consistent schedule during a time of change! Our clinicians are holistic, meaning we’ll take a look at your whole Wellness Wheel instead of just one little part of it. We’d love to talk with you - reach out using our online contact form today! We look forward to hearing from you!