Out with the Old, In with the New: Changing by Choice

We’ve all heard the saying “Out with the old, in with the new.”  It’s quite simple to understand and easier to say, but like most advice we give to one another, this is a very difficult thing to actually DO.  As I think about my life now there are so many new places where I am applying this phrase and as good as that is, some of the changes I’m facing are HUGE and definitely overwhelming.

Photo Courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/amanalang

Photo Courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/amanalang

I’m not great at choosing change, it usually needs to be forced on me and I’m guessing many of you are also like that. Most of us have probably already forgotten our resolutions, whatever they were – maybe to exercise more, eat healthy, build our nest egg, or go back to school, move up in our career. These conscious decisions for change that we make annually with the aim to let go of the old habits, routines & roadblocks can be so difficult to hold ourselves to that without real motivation or necessity we can let them slip. Back to the old.

Photo Courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/marekuliasz

Photo Courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/marekuliasz

Well I’ve certainly been one of these people – change is difficult & usually uncomfortable. I’m also quite stubborn & sentimental so unless I’m forced to make a change, I tend to remain right where I am.  But recently I realized how detrimental this thought process is to my future & I my resolution this year is to embrace the new & throw out the old.  I’m a bit terrified but also so excited!


Here’s what’s happening to me:

“Will you marry me?” – Ummmm, what?  Here I thought we were just having our regular sushi night & then the question is popped.  Because of a painful divorce, I was adamant I would never get married again.  Nobody would have that kind of control over me, ever.  I’ve been in a great relationship for a few years now but had intentionally built walls between us thinking I was protecting myself.  In about 5 seconds I toppled down those walls & said, “YES!” Why should my old life hold me back from a new one?

It was time to throw out the old thoughts…

Moving – One of my first blogs was about my home being my sanctuary. Now I need to sell it. I still haven’t fully wrapped my head around this huge change & the logistics alone are overwhelming. So far I have donated or packed up the things a prospective buyer might consider clutter. My sanctuary is now unfamiliar to me & it feels weird. I don’t like being unsettled. However, it’s time to rip up these roots & plant them in a place where they can grow.

Out with the old surroundings…

Photo Courtesy of quotes-lover.com

Photo Courtesy of quotes-lover.com

What’s my name? – Like many professionals, I will be hyphenating my name rather than changing it entirely. I want to ensure that my client families know that I’m still here & that everyone else knows I’m still Care Bayer, just with a few extra letters added on.

So, in with a new name…  : )

I talk with the families I serve about finding their “new normal” (nothing ever returns to normal after a death) in the months & years that follow their loss. While finding my new normal is nowhere near as heartbreaking or extreme as theirs, I must begin to take my own advice. 

Take each day as it arrives, see the opportunities as they are presented, and find comfort in the vulnerability of changing.


What do you THINK . . .

How have you most recently thrown out the old & brought in the new?

How did it change you?

Do you openly subscribe to this mindset or do you need force?

Has something prevented you from embracing it?

Thank you for sharing!


By | 2014-01-21T20:10:25-08:00 January 21st, 2014|Inspiration|26 Comments


  1. Molly Keating January 22, 2014 at 7:30 am - Reply

    I so appreciate that you’re not just talking Spring Cleaning in this post but going so much deeper into the crammed closets of our thoughts that so desperately need cleaning out. I’m challenged by your post to continue on this path that I’ve begun into what fears, anxieties and myths hold me back from being a fully formed version of myself.

    Thank you so much for posting, I value the advice.

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:55 am - Reply

      Thank you, Molly! You did a great job editing my blog & helped make it more meaningful. I always appreciate you- for what you do, who you are & how you inspire me when I’m blocked. Now I LOVE spring cleaning & this is far different but I’m thinking that if I have the spring cleaning mindset as I move forward, I’ll be more productive, my efforts more efficient & I’ll be happy rather than hesitant. Thank you so much! Love, Carrie

  2. Becky Finch Lomaka January 22, 2014 at 9:24 am - Reply

    Hi Carrie,
    You really have me thinking…
    Ironically, I tend to handle the big changes life throws at me pretty well, and as you said, even find those changes pretty exciting. However, as I read your blog, what you help me realize is that I don’t accept the subtle changes in my daily routines very well. New job- no problem…traffic jam that makes me late for work – end of the world to me (sad, I know)!

    My goal for the coming year is to not sweat the small stuff, and to allow myself to be vulnerable to and enjoy each day as it unfolds because each day is a gift.

    Thanks for the insights!!

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:49 am - Reply

      Becky, I wish I was more like you. I’d love to be able to embrace big changes easily. But, the small changes are what we face more often & how we handle them can affect the big changes that come our way. I’m glad you’ve set this goal to not sweat the small stuff (great books, by the way) & I’m excited to see how you flow thru the new way of thinking. Love, Carrie

  3. Mark January 22, 2014 at 10:41 am - Reply

    Carrie…..I once heard that the only person who likes change is a baby with a wet diaper! I am one of those people not crazy about change….but I am excited about the changes in your life…congratulations to you and Steve……Mark

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:46 am - Reply

      Mark, I agree & sometimes wish I was the baby- life would be much more simple. But, anything worth having is worth the hard work to get it & that means inevitable change. You have gone thru many changes this year as well & I have seen you face forced change with dignity, grace & faith. That is incredibly inspiring for those of us that cherish you. Thank you so much! Love, Carrie

  4. Anne January 22, 2014 at 10:57 am - Reply

    This is exactly where I am and I could have filled a blog likewise. Soooo much change and the need to simplify and clear out some of the old, not because my house is on the market, but because I have to identify what I want in my home, not what we want. I still say we, without thinking.
    I am so filled with joy for you for the courage it took for the “yes”, which ultimately creates all these decisions. You will be not only fine, but fulfilled. I have no doubt. Your courage will be greatly rewarded.
    Let us know how we can support you. 2014 will be a glorious year for you, without a doubt. Just let your focus be on one thing at a time, not the whole thing, so you keep your sanity.

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:44 am - Reply

      Sweet Anne, your entire previous year has been all about forced change & I know how incredibly difficult it has been. But I want you to know how many people you have inspired as you have moved thru each change phase. You have handled it all with complete grace, strength, faith & courage- I admire you more than you realize. I always have you in my heart & am always here for you as you continue your journey thru change. I love you! Carrie

      • Anne February 5, 2014 at 9:49 am - Reply

        Thanks, Carrie
        More than ever I am relying on my friends. I don’t always say it, but I wouldn’t be as far along as I am without each and every one of you and the unique expressions of love and care I still feel coming my way. I thought it would be easier, but that isn’t necessarily so.
        So, thank you. I love you.

  5. Mike Bayer January 22, 2014 at 11:44 am - Reply

    Hey Care Bayer…this is Papa Bayer and I am so glad you’re keeping that cool “Bayer” in your name. And…congratulations and thanks for the terrific message about change.

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:40 am - Reply

      Thank you, Papa Bayer! I remember meeting you when you cared for Anne & Lou- it was so nice to meet another Bayer. Thank you for all that you do & for your support. I appreciate your comments very much. Sincerely, Care Bayer

  6. Mitch January 22, 2014 at 12:25 pm - Reply

    I love your words. I too am leery of change. Over the last 15 years I have quite a few changes in my life & I am still working some of them out. I find if you take each one separately and get used to it, then move on to the next it may be a bit easier and you won’t be overwhelmed. Love you & what you do. Thank you.

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:38 am - Reply

      Mitch, you indeed have gone thru may changes. I’ve been lucky enough to have great conversations with you & you’ve shared some of them with me. You are an inspiration on how to managed forced change & I hope you know that people learn from your example. Thank you for being a good friend & for your support. You are good people! Love, Carrie

  7. Jeff Turner January 22, 2014 at 6:31 pm - Reply

    I love this! I just attended a leadership program to day where one of the main topics was “change”. The presentation was in part inspired by a book called “Life Launch” by Pamela D. McLean and Frederick M. Hudson. In the book they outline the four phases in a cycle that is not necessarily “natural” for us, but necessary. I am going to be reading this and evaluating where I am at in the cycle in the differing arenas of life right now. I think it will help me to understand where others might be at in their lives too. Very exciting.

    I am so happy about what you have embraced in the way of change and in particular, why. Thank you for this perspective.


    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:36 am - Reply

      Thank you, Jeff. If change was easy & natural for us, we wouldn’t have entire seminars, books & Life Coaches so prevalent. I’m happy that you are participating in learning more about change. I’m terrified about all these big changes but know they are necessary. Thank you! Love, Carrie

  8. Sharon Watkins January 24, 2014 at 10:39 am - Reply


    Change is difficult as you mentioned, but that is when we sometimes experience our greatest growth and our happiest times! I pray that all of these upcoming changes will be that way for you.
    I too have made a decision for major changes in my life this year. But I have no regrets and only hope and anticipation for more growth and happy times ahead. I wish the same for you Carrie.
    I’m so glad you are in my life.

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:00 am - Reply

      Sharon, you have been a big inspiration to me as you are also going thru a HUGE change yourself. I have watched you take the challenge by the horns & steer it in the direction it must go. It’s incredibly difficult to do but you make it look easy & I thank you for that. The example you have set for me & all of those around you has been amazing. Thank you! Love, Carrie

  9. Neil January 24, 2014 at 4:30 pm - Reply

    Hi Carrie –

    I am so proud of you! I am glad to see you are letting go of your past, not many people have ever done that and they go to their grave full or regret and fears. That is a major shift in your growth. Plus I am very happy for you and Steve, I know he is a great man and you two love each other.

    Well this years learning lesson for me is simple, I need to learn to create more space and margin between all the meetings, projects, and life’s activities. I tend to spin my wheels and not get much done when I don’t create more space.
    So yes, you can call me Captain Space! RRRGGG XOXO

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 7:58 am - Reply

      Neil, you have always been one of my best cheerleaders & I love you for that. Thank you so much for your ongoing support, I wouldn’t have been able to make so many huge changes in the last few years if I didn’t have you cheering me on. I also find myself wondering where my time has gone & how am I going to make room for the fun things in life. Creating space between the “must do’s” and the “want to do’s” is harder than we think & it’s crucial to make that space. You can do it! Love, Carrie

  10. Shasta Cola January 29, 2014 at 6:12 pm - Reply

    Congratulations, Carrie! I am excited for all these things to happen in your life! I feel exactly the same as you in regards to change. Sometimes it feels better to stay in a situation than risk that uncertainty of change. I am glad you are going for it all, I think you have such a bright future!

    • Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 7:54 am - Reply

      Thank you, Shasta! And I agree, staying where it’s familiar feels safe & that’s exactly where I tend to stay. But, to have a future that is good, healthy & fun we must let go of the familiar & jump into the unknown. We always figure things out as we go & make the new become familiar & safe-feeling. Thank you! Carrie

  11. Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:03 am - Reply

    Chuck, you guys know me better than I know myself sometimes. Letting go is not a part of my tenacious nature. I’m like a rabid dog sometimes- my jaws lock on & I can’t let go, even if I want to. Thank you for supporting me thru all of the changes I’ve gone thru in the last few years, at times it has been the only thing keeping me moving forward. Thank you! Love, Carrie

  12. Carrie Bayer January 30, 2014 at 8:51 am - Reply

    Joe, I have watched you go thru forced change & am seeing you as you face it again. You have alot ahead of you & we are all rallying behind you. Please don’t hesitate to reach out when you need support, we all love you. Love, Carrie

  13. Lori February 1, 2014 at 12:00 pm - Reply

    First and foremost, Congratulations!! I have known you for more than four years now and never did I expect that you would take the leap again. I am so glad you are not allowing your painful experience last time prevent you from forging on to enjoy a happy life. I am proud of you for taking this big step!!
    Second, I do not think there is a post I can relate to more. I am the ultimate creature of habit. I keep insisting I am going to get involved in different things to change up my rut, but so far it hasn’t taken. Perhaps your post is the incentive I need to not just think about change, but actually change!
    Lori “BG” 🙂

  14. Patricia Kolstad February 10, 2014 at 10:08 am - Reply

    Carrie . . You and I have had many wonderful conversations about life, courage, finding strength in hard times, and becoming a woman who can move forward on her own. For me, it has been exciting seeing you come into your own! I see a woman who is making decisions that will not only bring love and joy in your life, but will bring a sense of peace and completion. For me, becoming a single woman after years of marriage was an unraveling of who I was and more importantly, would I survive?. With the help of my closest friends, and the men of O’Connor, I found a sense of accomplishment, perseverance, strength and personal growth, both personally and professionally. I am so proud of the woman you have become, and the positive steps you’ve taken to bring happiness and growth in your life. I see you more comfortable in moving forward with your new changes and becoming a mentor to others who maybe afraid. I’m so excited for this new chapter of your life!

  15. Shayna Mallik February 13, 2014 at 2:08 pm - Reply

    Once again great blog! I am so excited for you to start yours and Steve’s next chapter in life together. CONGRATULATIONS! I know how hard it is for you to sell your home, your sanctuary, but I also know how great the next chapter in your life will be. Love You