Ch-ch-ch-changes

The only con­stant in life is change. Yes, change can be fun and ex­cit­ing, but it can also be stress­ful and over­whelm­ing. The good news is that mind­ful­ness tech­niques can help us choose how we re­spond when things don’t go to plan

Nadia - - CONTENTS -

Tech­niques to help you cope with change

It’s 11pm, you’re wait­ing to fly home to Auck­land from Los An­ge­les and you’ve just been bumped off your flight be­cause the plane is over-booked. The air­line has of­fered to put you and your part­ner up in a ho­tel for the night and get you on the same flight out to­mor­row. In the flurry of dis­placed pas­sen­gers, you mis­hear which ho­tel you’re meant to be head­ing to and get in a taxi to a com­pletely dif­fer­ent one on the other side of LA – with a concierge who, of course, has no idea where you’re meant to be or what on earth you’re talk­ing about.

You go back to LAX at 1am (with a taxi driver who’s min­utes away from fall­ing asleep at the wheel) only to re­alise the air­port’s now closed and the only way to get any in­for­ma­tion is to send a tweet to the air­line in New Zealand and try to get them to solve the prob­lem for you.

Sounds like a night­mare, right? Well, it hap­pened to me a few years ago and I’m still baf­fled by how calm I man­aged to re­main through­out the whole ex­pe­ri­ence. From the mo­ment we re­alised we were at the wrong ho­tel, I knew there were two ways I could deal with the sit­u­a­tion. 1) Get anx­ious, stressed and frus­trated – which would stress out my boyfriend and the other stranded pas­sen­ger we’d brought along for the ride. Or 2) Re­main calm, go with the flow and have con­fi­dence that it would all work out and I’d have a great story to tell at the end of it, which was the state of mind I chose to adopt.

In the end, we made it to the cor­rect ho­tel around 3am and flew out the next day, but it was this ex­pe­ri­ence that showed me that we re­ally do have con­trol over the way we re­act to change, whether that’s a sud­den, un­ex­pected prob­lem (like my sit­u­a­tion) or some­thing more dra­matic and longer-last­ing such as los­ing your job or home.

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