I didn’t always like changes. As a matter of fact, I was afraid of it and I hated it. For the longest time, change has been this word that leaves an ominous aftertaste and I couldn’t figure out why. And I’m not the only one. We seem to be living in a world where the majority is scared by change.
Often, we pretended to embrace change even as our heart sank, because we knew it was going to end badly and we already felt the inevitable loss. “I hate this relationship but I’m afraid of being alone, or I’m tired of being a teacher but I don’t know how to do anything else.” The twisted thing about change is that we want it as much as we fear it, and we need it as much as we need safety.
Change Comes With Loss
I realised that every change comes with a loss of something. Usually, it is the comfort, predictability, and safety. Change always means giving something up, and that is difficult for many people, even in inevitable situations. This is why change is so hard for so many people. They don’t fear change itself, they fear the loss it brings.
For example, you’re leading a meeting and somewhere down the meeting you say, “We’re going to try something new” or “We’re taking a new direction”. With a bit of empathy, you know this puts people on edge at the end of your sentence. This makes most of the people all nervous about what’s coming, and for a small group, it might be exciting. But when you follow up with a reason, it will put people more at ease.
As Simon Sinek famously wrote, we need to start with the why – the purpose.
“People don’t buy what you do. They buy why you do it.” – Simon Sinek
Change Is A Means To Progress, Not An Aim
Change is something that is required to keep ourselves and the world progressing forward. Refusal to change is inaction and leads to deteriorating of self or an organisation. Change is a by-product when a decision is made, or a vision is pursued. If we reach a place where change is a decision or a vision, then we become purposeless. It would mean that we toy with things that don’t need to be toyed with. We become bored and discard perfectly good ways of doing things. We fix what is not broken and in doing so, we break it.
For change to be meaningful, either personally or in an organisation, it must have a target, a goal. It is a change in direction to reach a different destination, and the destination must be better than the one on the previous route. Therefore, change cannot be our aim, it must be our means.
Change comes in different sizes and in different momentums. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a change that affects our entire life, family, friends, education, and every other aspect. But sometimes, even changing something as simple as our thoughts can have a huge impact on our lives.
That is why I’m a change enthusiast. Regardless of how big or small change may be, it affects our mindset, workflow, and can serve as a huge boost in our overall day enthusiasm. Also, it allows me to see myself, and even the world, from a different perspective. It gives me the chance to clear my mind and move forward. Time changes, and when we as a person stay motionless in life, we won’t get nearly the experience we would be getting if we were opened and accepting to change.
“When time changes, so must we.” – Barack Obama
In The End, There Will Be Good News
It doesn’t matter whether we embrace change or hide away from it in a corner because change is constant. Change is happening all the time, with and without your participation, from “they stopped making my favourite sandwich” to “I’m expecting a baby”.
Even if you make no changes in your second-rate marriage, your boring job, or your painful relationship with your brother, all those things will change anyway. You can either choose to take steps toward change or to wait and see what surprises life has for you as you cling to what you thought was safety.
Mostly, change is as inevitable as the leaves falling in autumn. Some of us choose to stay home, some of us choose to go outside and experience the scenery, a few admirable of us go rolling in the leaves and make photos. No matter what, the leaf falls. It falls to give valuable nutrition to the soil and make preparations to blossom once again next spring.
Originally published at ye-chen.com.
- What are your thoughts on change?
- What has been your biggest change in life?
- What has been your most unexpected change?
Have your say in the comment section 🙂
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Freelancer // Blogger // Life & Change Enthusiast.