A New Year and The Discomfort of Change

It’s a new year and in the spirit of resolutions, I am doing the thing I often challenge my clients to do, to embrace discomfort and lean into the process of change. Like many of you, I have set my own goals for 2022 and as I watched the New Year’s Eve ball drop on TV, I had both an exciting glimmer of hope of what 2022 holds and also the realization that the time to act was now.

While I was excited, I started to question why does change feel so hard? Even when I dream of the positive results that may await me on the other side, I feel comfort and a sense of safety in the status quo. It was in this moment, I connected with what some of my clients face as I experienced my own ambivalence to change. 

As a psychotherapist, my philosophy has always been to meet clients where they are. I believe each person’s journey is uniquely their own. I fully accept clients as they are and show them unconditional positive regard no matter where that journey takes us. It was my turn to practice what I teach (not preach); to look within and show myself unconditional positive regard and acceptance no matter where this journey takes me. Abraham Maslow wisely said, “In any given moment we have two options; to step forward into growth or step back into safety”. I chose to step forward.

So, this is my first attempt to lean into the awkwardness of change. I am embracing the electric tingling discomfort of doing something new and putting myself into the arena by writing this blog. I am allowing myself to be fully seen, stepping out from behind the shadows of self-doubt and negative self-talk (yes as a therapist I too have to work hard to challenge that negative voice) and to manifest my goals into reality. To be fully seen feels vulnerable, and yet in the face of this discomfort I am driven to do so to #reducethestigma around mental health. This blog holds me accountable to my goal of helping to destigmatize mental health and to further the conversations around mental health, trauma, and wellness. Throughout the year I will consistently post on these topics and my hope is that it continues the conversation and adds value and resources to those who may need it. If one person reading this feels inspired to step forward into growth and embraces that they aren’t alone in the awkwardness and discomfort of change, I consider this experience to be well worth it.