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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThere are not many people I know who are “good” at dealing with change. As humans we are creatures of habit. Even when it comes to positive changes in our lives – we often respond with at least some negative reactions. These reactions might come in the form of anxiety, fear, sadness, negative thoughts or behaviors ect.

I never knew that.

When I switched dance studios as a teen I told myself and expected myself to just slide in, make new friends, forget the old and be happy about it.

During my freshman year of college I was under the assumption that I should be having an amazing time (like everyone else).

When I transitioned between summer and school from home-to-college I didn’t understand why I was struggling.

When I graduated from James Madison University. I put the expectation on myself that I should be celebrating and basking in the glory of my achievement.

When I moved out of my hometown into my first apartment I thought that was supposed to be an easy/happy transition into adulthood.

….

You get the idea.

Well, I probably don’t have to tell you at this point that none of those things above actually happened as I expected them or intended them to. Most of them were riddled with fear, anxiety, self-doubt, insecurity (and other things).  I’ve learned those feelings don’t make those experiences bad, less monuments, or significant to me. No – acknowledging those feelings have taught me something really important: I am really strong.

The next time you criticize yourself for feeling or not feeling a certain way about a certain situation or change in your life remind yourself that it’s not about the changes, the feelings, or any of that stuff. It’s about what you do with it.

I pushed, hid, shoved, and stuffed feelings for so long. I got sicker and sicker. Then I started doing something different: allowing myself to be not okay.

Change is hard for everyone – it’s okay to not be okay.

My name is Erin and This is Where I Stand.