Let’s face it: embracing change is no fun. Everyone likes staying in his or her comfort zone. After all, they call it a “comfort” zone for a reason—even the term itself stirs up deep feelings of calm, relaxation and security. But eventually, something comes along to shake us out of it. Change happens to us all—it’s simply a part of life. And while some change is undeniably good, we’re often faced with disruptions that certainly don’t feel welcome.
The good news is that embracing change is not a difficult skill to learn. And once you start looking at change as a good thing, you’ll be amazed at some of the benefits that can follow. Here are seven reasons why embracing change can be a very good habit to adopt.
1. Change helps you grow
Changes often force us to adapt in ways we’ve never experienced, which can be a major driver of personal (and even professional) growth and development.
2. Change teaches you to be flexible
Try to think of change as something that gets you out of your rut. By embracing change and meeting it head-on with excitement, you can learn not to be so set in your ways—which can help you maintain a more positive attitude.
3. Change can challenge your values and beliefs
Reacting to change often involves re-evaluating your belief system. That’s not a bad thing—if you’re devoutly religious, for example, you don’t need to turn your faith on its head.
But if you’re open to learning new ways of approaching problems, you may find you learn something. Alternately, change may simply reinforce your trust in the belief system you already have. Either way, you become stronger.
4. Change reveals your strengths
Without being forced to accept changes, you might never learn the true measure of your own strength—including your ability to adapt in new (and often interesting) ways.
5. Change makes you more compassionate
When you become “too comfortable” in your own situation, it can be much more difficult to understand what others might be going through. Change reminds you to be kind when you’re considering the choices other people may make.
6. Change breaks up routines
Some routines, like brushing and flossing your teeth, are good to maintain. (Ask the people around you!) But other routines can leave you in a rut—and possibly even contribute to depression and stress.
By breaking up your routine, change keeps your mind active, refocusing your thoughts so your mind stays active and doesn’t become fixated on negative thought patterns.
7. Change offers opportunities
By altering the way you live your life, even in a small way, change can present opportunities that can have a domino effect, providing you with more choices than you ever dreamed possible—so you can create a more fulfilling and authentic life.
Like any new habit, embracing change takes some practice. Keep this list handy, though—the next time you’re presented with a change that seems a little intimidating, you can refer to it. Use it to remind yourself of all the positive impacts that change could—not only on your own life, but on the lives of those around you as well.