There's a discussion going on at a writers' group I frequent. The conversation started when someone asked what to do if a publication you've been writing for changes editorial direction and you don't like the new direction. My response was to stop pitching. If you feel that strongly, it's probably not worth the hassle. It's probably time to let them go. Several others' responded similarly.
And then somebody mentioned a prior conversation that occurred on this site, quoting this gem:
"All good clients must come to an end."
Perfect! It works for anyone in any business. You can serve a client for only so long, and then you've done your job or reached your peak. It's time to move on and find fresh faces, new projects, more clients. It's time to wave goodbye, metaphorically speaking.
Perhaps you've been there before. You've worked with a client that you've loved for years. The work has been frequent, the jobs have been interesting, and management of projects well executed. No problems to speak of, for the most part. But then something happens to change that perfect picture. We all need to change things up every now and then, either to steer clear of monotony or perhaps to improve or stretch ourselves in some other way.
This happens in business and in our personal lives. Change happens. A fork in the road appears before us that requires us to pause and make a decision we weren't expecting, for example. We don't have to like it. But we do have to deal with it, or else we just stop and go nowhere.
If you're struggling with a life-changing experience right now, something that's causing you pause, here are a few tips that might help you cope:
1) Accept the change. Not necessarily the situation, but the change itself. Accept that it's happening. The dealing part can wait. But acknowledging the reality of the situation will help make things easier for you down the road, when you're ready to act.
2) Consider what the change might mean. Will it make things easier for you, more difficult, or just different?
3) Think about your options. Based on what you now know the change might mean for you, what are your options? If it's a new client you need, then it's time to market. If it's a new direction of your own that you'll need to take, what would be most exciting for you? Think about going there.
4) Take a break. Sometimes change feels too overwhelming to think about at the moment, so take a break. Go for a walk. Schedule a much-needed weekend away. Do something out of the ordinary to get your mind away from what you might perceive as difficult. When you return with a renewed perspective, you'll be better able to focus on the next step.
5) Take action. Create a plan of action for what you need to do to address this change. Keep it as simple or as complete as you need in order to move forward, and then execute the plan--one step at a time, taking it as quickly or as slowly as you need to go.
6) Use your own inner B.I.K.E. To adapt to this new change, focus on what would be the best way for you to respond. That's going to result in making decisions and taking actions that will be most authentic to you, serve your values, and leave you feeling the most sure of yourself. So ask yourself the following questions:
_What kind of attitude will this change require of you in order to ensure a smooth transition? Adopt it immediately.
_Will you be able to withstand any chaos that may arise? Are you prepared for any fallout? Believe that you are.
_What are your gut feelings saying you should do--Are you listening and paying attention at the same time? Trust that you will.
_Do you know who might be able to help you make this move? Will you be willing to call on that person, or those persons? Assure yourself it's okay to ask for help.
If you follow these steps, you'll wind up embracing that which you once feared, and all that you need to adapt will reveal itself. Because, just as all good clients must come to an end, new clients are just around the corner. Goodbye. Hello. It's the natural balance of things. Don't you think?