You can feel it in the air.

You can see it in the shifting of colors on the trees–shading from green to red to brown.

Shadows are lengthening as the sun shifts.

I’m sitting on my swing porch with a  cup of tea. I can feel the change and at the same time dread it.

The constancy of seasonal changes can be comforting. If you live where leaves put on a show of color, nature supplies a master class in how change can be beautiful.

I definitely welcome the cooler temperatures after the sweltering summer we had.

The annual shift from Daylight Savings Time–that’s a major problem for me. My body protests the loss of an hour’s sleep and takes weeks to adjust.

I’m not a tree willingly changing color and shedding foliage. I’m a Texas tree that slowly fades to ugly, boring brown instead of glowing with reds, yellows, and oranges.

Grumbling and complaining, I  remind myself there’s not much I can do about the weather or the time change except adjust my clothing, our thermostat, and our clocks.

I know Spring will roll around again and I will get back that hour of rest I lost. But the change tends to steal my peacefulness. It doesn’t have to.

A better approach to the change is with pliancy instead of frustration. Flexibility keeps our happiness steady. That’s why I take a cup of tea to the porch swing and relax.

Others recommend these three things when any change is stressful.

  • Breathe –By breathing slower and more deeply from your stomach, you signal your nervous system to calm down when you can’t control the situation. Purposeful breathing allows you to calm down and think rationally.
  • Smile – Smile even if whatever change has thrown your way is not funny. You’ll find a certain amount of detachment can lead to acceptance.
  • Pray or Meditate – To refocus the mind.

Most importantly,  remember that change is the only constant in this world. Whatever the catastrophe or circumstance, eventually it will change.

What about you? What strategies do you use when change stresses you?