The fear of change can absolutely rock your boat. What do you do when your goals slip through your fingers? You were on a path leading you right where you wanted to be and, now, it’s gone. The pain goes deep, somewhere inside where everything you thought you were is being challenged. Your sense of identity is now front and center. How in the world can change, especially change that you don’t want, become valuable growth-a growing that allows you to shine?
Change can be scary
Fear of change can have a lot attached to it. Change may cause you to think you are going to lose the identity that you have been building for a long time. Fear of losing your identity is real if you have defined yourself based on accomplishments or goals you have been striving for. In spite of the unknown path before you or a sudden turn off the beaten path, fear of the change can be exchanged for valuable growth.
What your identity is NOT.
Your identity is the core of who you are, not what you do. The “doing” can reflect your identity but it’s still not the “me” that is your core identity. Look at it this way: you are not your goals, not your accomplishments, and not the label attached to your name. Those are results of your work, whether it’s based on being too busy, or being busy-less.
Your identity is not your environment. Your heritage is important. God had you born there on purpose. But, your place on this earth, where God has you now, is also not your identity. When your identity is based on those things, then your self-worth can change every time one of those things changes.
Self-worth, based on what others think, or who you think you have to be in order to be admired or loved, or worth loving changes every time you accomplish something and realize it did not bring the satisfaction you thought it would.
It’s a crazy life based on fear, robbing us of joy and peace.
The struggle is real. I know. I’m a senior citizen and I still struggle and ponder these things.
It helps to imagine taking off a person-shaped image of “me” and setting it to the side. That version of “me” is now assigned who you thought you needed to be in order to ……
Be a good mom or dad. Be a good wife or husband. Be a good son or daughter. Be a good employee, boss, ceo, etc..
If you unload all of that, and take a long look at who you are without all of that stuff you are wearing, who are you, really?
This is not as easy as the sentence you just read.
Ask God to show you how you identify yourself and who He created you to be. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be seen as “someone who is comfortable in their own skin”?
Here is an exercise for you to do over the next few days.
Observe how you react according to who you believe you must be in order to be accepted. If you will really take notice, you’ll become more aware of how it makes you feel inside. As time goes on, you’ll begin to stop the performance before you even begin because you will remember the yucky feeling.
Everyone needs peace and rest every day!
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You will gain a sense of freedom that may have been a long time since you really felt it.
A new perspective of yourself will blossom. Those roles you have…remember, .they are what you DO, not necessarily who you ARE. Now, you can wear that image of yourself in a better way. The real “me” can now live simpler. Just live and grow the way the Lord tells us to. The rest will fall into place. The rest is just evidence of who you are and how you work out your life. It’s not your identity.
Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.
For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done. – Mat 16:24-27 NIV
“How to Turn Fear of Change into Valuable Growth” is actually a willingness to “lose your life”.
Losing your life is the beginning of valuable growth. If you will lay down the way you have identified yourself, your “life”, then Jesus will cause real growth. More self-discipline, more behavior modification, more stress on yourself is not going to cause you to find your real life.
Changing the level of your busyness can be exactly what you need in order to reveal who you really are.
Not who you want to be
Not who you can “re-invent” yourself to be.
Not who others want you to be.
You. The real you. Before the world stamped its mold and expectations on you. The “you” God wants to mold you into.
Then, you can find your real life.
“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. – Mat 6:33 CSB