growing changes

Make Any Change a Change for the Better

Change is inevitable. We cannot control every change happening around us, but what we can do is work on our attitude and how we react to it. We either choose to embrace the fact that change happens or be stubborn and resist it. Have you ever tried to push the water upstream? That is what resisting change is comparable to. No matter how hard you try, you will eventually have to give in.

People respond to changes differently. Some believe it to be “progress” and adopt the improvements it causes. Others have a hard time accepting and keep wishing for “good ol’ days”. There are leaders, and there are followers. Embracing change puts you ahead of the pack.

Embrace Change

To get on the path of embracing change, you will have to focus on addressing core 5 areas.

  1. Vision

Helen Keller once stated, “Nothing is more tragic than someone who has sight, but no vision.” Concentrate on your vision and allow it to drive everything that you do. Do not shut down your imagination, let your thoughts guide you towards progress and change. It may seem like your mind is taking you into a dark place filled with reasons why you cannot succeed. Don’t give in. Remember the vision, focus on the reasons why you can and will achieve what you’ve put your mind to, be it a person, a team, or an organizational goal.

Your point of focus helps you find what you concentrate on. Your vision needs to be backed up by an array of several core values as, otherwise, your commitment will be weak. These values give context to unending growth and help us through the thorny path towards the dream.

  1. Outlook

“Our emotions are our responsibility.” This single phrase is definitely not the most pleasing to hear. It is even harder to take in when you stop and think about it. If we were honest with ourselves, it is us who select to lose temper, get jealous, give in to anger, become bitter, or hold on to hatred. It is easier to think that somebody else is responsible for how we react, but the truth is they are not. Granted, people’s behavior affects our feelings, but it does not change the fact that we choose to express or hold onto certain emotions as a result of others’ actions.

We make ourselves prisoners of these very emotions, which stress us out. Actually, these are we who stress ourselves out.

As a matter of fact, stewing in these negative emotions puts you at risk. Negative effects of piled grudges and resentments don’t just make us cynical, they do far more harm and even increase the risk of heart disease. We need — no, we must — take responsibility for our reaction to circumstances, especially the ones we cannot control. After all, the only ones who we can govern are ourselves, what thoughts we choose to have, which emotions to express, which actions to take. Choose your thoughts wisely to take control over your future.

  1. Authenticity

In order to genuinely create something, you need to be something in the first place. Think about it for a second. It is easy to become a parent; it is being a parent that’s tough. Then try teaching your kid self-discipline, without being self-disciplined yourself.

This very principle can be applied to anything. You won’t be able to build a strong team unless you’re a strong team player yourself. It’s foolish to expect a joyful marriage if you’re not a loving spouse. You won’t have a network of supportive friends until you start being one. David Whyte claims, “All things change when we do.”

The unpleasant part is asking yourself the question: “Which things do I have to change in myself?” Instead of waiting for circumstances to change, you may be better off looking for a change of nature and temperament. The action is what separates good authentic leaders from everyone else. They make things happen and get stuff done.

  1. Discipline

Confucius wrote many centuries ago, “The nature of people is always the same; it is their habits that separate them.” Self-disciple will take you much further than an average leader. Discipline is what allows successful people to persevere and do things that the vast majority of people don’t want to perform.

Our habits are the result of our choices. Day by day we make small daily decisions with accumulating results. Before you know it, you may end up being stuck with either a bad or a good habit.

As a result of a habit, we make most of our choices automatically without giving it much thought. To change the habit, we first should be aware of its existence. Once we come to terms with that, we need to trace its way to our daily lives and actions that helped form the habit. Eventually, we will have to be changing these unhealthy practices to break that very habit.

Those who can’t resist instant gratification over prospective future will never be as successful. Living the moment is easier than staying dedicated to long-term vision. When the first excitement rushes away, it’s disciple that makes us keep going and going.

  1. Growth

The vast majority sees themselves for what they are; true leaders — for what they could become. Leaders look beyond current troubles and assist others in seeing their possibilities. Looking ahead is a part of leaders’ success formula, which is key to their personal development and growth.

Leaders stay at least one step ahead and keep growing as they bring up others. They lead. In general, you want to split growth and development into two parts: the first part is about helping others grow, and the second is about developing yourself.

As you grow, you seek to become more effective by applying your skills and knowledge. The more you get used to changes, the easier it becomes to settle for a form of “busyness” versus actually being effective at what you do. Keeping pace is good, but it can also get harmful once you get caught up. Stay alert, or you might end up like a woodcutter, who is too busy hewing to take the time and make his ax sharper.

Take a step back, reassess your plans and efforts, evaluate your progress and adjust your strategies based on the results. If you do it right, reflecting on the progress is never a waste of time.

It Starts with a Choice

Change calls for choices to be made. No matter the circumstances, you can embrace the change and look for positive outtakes. It all comes down to what you set your focus on.

When a crisis hits, it may be difficult to concentrate on potential benefits and growth opportunities. However, most people who have managed to weather the storm look back on it as the ultimate life-changing experience. Crisis can cause significant damage, weaken you, or you can take the “lemons” and make the best of it. It is your choice to make either a reality.

Life is not stagnant, life flows, life is change. The choice to continue growing and developing makes it easier to embrace change. Failing to do so will lead to falling behind on life itself.