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Nov. 18, 2016 // WorkLife Wisdom: Change During Uncertain Times

Change and uncertainty at work may generate different emotions, including fear of job loss and confusion about work related roles and responsibilities. Many end up becoming nervous, anxious and frustrated when he or she does not know what to expect within the workplace. Dealing with change in the workplace can be difficult. Periods of change and uncertainty can increase levels of stress and anxiety, and cause heightened levels of fear and confusion.

In order to manage change effectively, it is important to find your inner strength and become empowered to move forward and cope with the changes. Many may need to find their own way to navigate through this difficult time.

During a period of change, people may have different reactions and emotions. Some of the more common reactions may include:

  • Shock and becoming withdrawn from work and others.
  • Fear and insecurity.
  • Frustration and heightened levels of anger.
  • Sadness, guilt and symptoms of depression.
  • Lack of interest in activities.
  • Distracted, difficulty focusing.
  • Increased negativity and sarcasm.

There are many different ways to cope with change. Here are a few ways that you can better manage yourself during a challenging time:

  • Make a plan: Take charge and make a plan in advance of how you will respond to a changed work environment. Think about what is most important and make it a priority. This should help minimize your anxiety and stress levels, and will better prepare you for the changing environment.
  • Communicate: During changing times, it is important to talk with people you trust. Seek out friends and peers or speak with your supervisor. Don’t isolate yourself with your worries and concerns, as it may leave you feeling frustrated and overwhelmed.
  • Take a walk: If you feel yourself becoming distracted, take a quick break. Try to take a few minutes during your lunch break to take a walk. Taking a break can help you re-charge and re-gain your focus to get you through the day.
  • Think positive: Embrace positive energy. Seek out and stay positive whenever you can. Show happiness, compassion and gratitude towards self and others. A positive attitude can increase overall optimism.
  • Laugh: Take a minute to laugh. Laughter and humor are important tools in times of stress. Find a moment to laugh with peers and have a lighthearted conversation. This can help everyone keep their stress levels down.
  • Be proactive: Recognize the signs if you feel yourself having a difficult time managing stress. Talk to someone before it gets to be too much.

During times of change and uncertainty, it is important to stay focused on the day-to-day duties and practice different ways to avoid feeling anxious and nervous. Things to do include:

  • Stay informed, but don’t listen to water-cooler rumors.
  • Take every opportunity to learn new skills or tackle new projects.
  • Continue to network professionally and keep your resume updated.
  • Take care of yourself. Eat right, keep in shape and get enough sleep.
  • Stay on top of your finances. Reduce debt; protect credit by paying bills on time, and save what you can.
  • Remain optimistic and refrain from spreading doom and gloom, either inside or outside the workplace.

Contact Us: Your program provides access to tools and other resources online at MagellanHealth.com/member or call us directly at 1-800-234-1327 to speak to a professional counselor who is available everyday at any time to provide confidential assistance at no cost to you.