New chapters occur when you least expect it, and you end up with disrupted routines and feeling out of control. It’s time you learn to embrace new chapters instead of resisting them.
While most of us fear change, it isn’t always negative. It can be the result of a new chapter that brings new opportunities and growth. But, still, you can get flustered when going through something totally novel and feel unprepared for the change.
The good news is you can approach these life events with a few positive techniques to keep from feeling overwhelmed. Remember, Deuteronomy 31:8 says “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.
Follow these strategies when embracing new chapters:
1. Have an open mind. Expect the best scenario instead of the worst when beginning. a new chapter. Remember when you’ve made it through more challenging situations before. God tells His people often to “remember.”
Thinking through how He’s been with you in the past will give hope for the story you are in right now. Embrace the idea “this” might bring a positive spin to an existing (challenging) situation. A new chapter in life could be the answer to reaching previously unattainable goals.
2. Exercise courage. Fear can keep us from achieving what we hope for in life. Unfortunately, change can turn the strong weak and result in disappointment, sadness, and humiliation. Face the unknown with every ounce of courage you have and ask God for help in finding more.
Practice healthy self-talk. Tell yourself you’re brave. Walk into a situation while repeating the words of Joshua, “Be strong, be not afraid, for the Lord is with me wherever I go. I have in Him what it takes…”
3. Take one step at a time. While it’s important to imagine the goodness in what’s ahead, it’s still easiest to break the transition down into parts. Giving ourselves a moment to grieve what’s changing, and move congruent with the change will minimize unwanted side effects.
Trusting in God’s leading and the promise of Psalm 139 “All of our days are ordained for us before any of them came to be…’ we can even come to savor the taste of newness.
4. Be guided by past mistakes. You are the expert on your life- you have experience in what has and has not worked. You know your strengths and abilities, and also where you went wrong before. These lessons are tools we take into life’s new chapter. Using them will guide us through the unknown.
5. Be honest. Are you intimidated? Does it feel out of control? Does it feel unfair? Those in the story with you will respect your honesty as you share vulnerably how easy or hard this transition is to manage.
Vulnerability is a sign of maturity and honors the relationship. It communicates to someone they are worth you not pretending, and might even make the work of a new chapter worth it if it breeds a deeper connection with those in your life.
It dosen’t have to be scary.
You can do hard things, are capable of taking challenges head-on, and can relish in the goodness they can freshly provide. Psalm 32:8 teaches “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.” Give yourself the chance to experience fulfillment and rest in the truth when God is with you, you have everything you need.