What’s your perception of change?

Marcus Straub
Marcus Straub

Change occurs on a regular basis in life and business whether we want it to or not. Economies change, business environments change, weather changes, team dynamics change and relationships change. Life in general is about change. And if we resist change, we limit the potential of all that’s available to us personally and professionally.

Why then, do we tend to resist change?

One reason we avoid change is because to meet change in a positive and effective manner, we must change, too. Moreover, we become comfortable in our current position, even if it doesn’t create happiness and success. Another reason we resist change is we have the tendency to focus on how hard change will be and the possible negative outcomes, which are typically assumptions based on our fear of the unknown.

Basically, we avoid change because we focus on what we perceive as the downside of change. In our tendency to focus on the “difficulties” of change rather than the benefits, we stop ourselves from taking action. This must be overcome if your intention is to experience increased happiness and success both personally and professionally.

Humans are amazing in what they can accomplish once they open their minds to possibility and decide to take action. Change is much easier when we choose to see it in a positive light. As we embrace change, we alter our perception of it from a “bad” thing to a “positive” thing filled with opportunity.

If your business has stalled or is failing, if your relationships aren’t fulfilling or your health is declining, to name only a few, you can use your awareness of these facts to face reality. While you might be “comfortable” in your current situation, your resistance to change is diminishing your happiness and success a little more each day.

Self-honesty is a vital ingredient in choosing to make a change. As you become conscious of the negative feelings — the pain and undesirable results of your choice not to change — that discomfort helps propel you forward. We all reach a point where we “can’t take it anymore.” Getting real with yourself will help you reach this threshold sooner, saving precious time in creating a reality you do find pleasing.

One aspect of my coaching is to show people how their thought and behavior patterns work against what they want — how they’re actually working against themselves. We then explore new thoughts and behaviors that will allow them to change their realities in positive ways. The focus here is on the actual reasons for making changes and the multitude of benefits for doing so.

One example of this would be letting a team member go who’s a good person with all the skills necessary to do the job, but their attitude and behavior  damage corporate culture, customer relations and the bottom line. If you walk into your business and feel an aversion to certain team members because of their negativity, then a change of some sort is in order.

This personnel situation is very common in the business world and becomes more severe the longer it’s allowed to continue. Personnel changes often are avoided because of the time, effort and money involved in hiring and training a new person. There’s also the aspect of not wanting to have the tough talks that often accompany letting someone go.

As you turn your attention away from what appears at first as the overwhelming effort involved in creating positive change and focus instead on all the benefits of it, you’ll take on the change with an energy that makes the effort seem a lot less daunting than originally perceived. In other words, you eliminate a major barrier to change by focusing on how it will improve the situation.

Change is inevitable. Imagine how powerful and freeing it will be when you’re no longer paralyzed by change.

If you’re not pleased with the way things are going, then choose to make a change in you first — in how you perceive change. By doing so, you position yourself to take actions that will improve your situation and enhance your feelings of happiness and success.