“People don’t like change, do they?” Someone said this to me recently. I hear this a lot. Is it a statement or a question? Depending on the situation, I probe and find out. Checking, is this their way of saying “I don’t like change”.
In my lifetime we’ve become obsessed with change. In our personal lives and in our organisations. The nature of change, the fast pace, the constancy. As if we have discovered something new. To be controlled and managed.
In the realm of growth and transformation, I prefer progress to change.
Where change is about from state A to state B, progress relates to process and forward momentum. The journey, not simply the destination.
If the “destination” is growth and transformation, there is no end. No outcome. We see the ever present threads of progress in our lives. See the links and flow, rather than beginnings and endings. Stops and starts.
The process of progress is ever present whether we like it or not. Whether we invite it in or not. Whether we choose to collaborate or not.
Progress is not something to control and manage. It is a natural, organic process. We can, however, collaborate. Learn to swim with the tide. Stop wasting our energies going against the flow.
For me, this shift came gradually. I began by looking back through my life. I viewed myself as focused, someone who gave their best in all they did. Yet the most significant events came about through other means. Without effort. They happened without me “trying”.
Then I observed my day to day. Inconveniences that turned out to be blessings. Chance meetings. Information popping up just as I need it. And more…
I now see Nature’s organizing power in every aspect of my life. Yes, I still get stressed and irritated sometimes, when things don’t turn out as I planned – this is a process!
Take the big view along the timeline of your life. Look at events, relationships, career, home, location, travel, influences, trends, patterns….
What do you see?
How often did people show up in your life, just at the right time, without effort on your part?
When you missed out on the job, the promotion, the house – what else came along that you would not have been available for had you gone the other route?
Notice how things that do not last are not meant to last. Yet they play a vital role.
The relationship that woke you up and caused you to move on.
The new job that seemed perfect yet did not work out, got you out of a stagnant role.
Notice how things happen without our efforts, outside our control.
Call it synchronicity, fate. But do not call it luck. The forces of Nature, of progress and transformation, combine to move us forward.
So, let’s have a moratorium on change. Instead, adopt progress.
Everywhere we say or think “change”, insert “progress” and test out the difference.