Clear Confident Leader Weekly Observer, Issue #20
From the Greenbelt of Boise, Idaho, Snow falling
The only person who likes change is a wet baby. – Roy Z-M Blitzer
The only constant in the universe is change. Nothing stays the same for a day, an hour, or even a second … Change is life, and the ability to change is the essential element of growth. The freedom founded upon the realization and acceptance of this truth, that nothing stays the same, is the source of the power of true creativity. – Mitsugi Saotome
Embracing change is consciously choosing our future. – Thomas Crum
It is normal to find ourselves resisting change. Unconsciously we can perceive change as a loss, threat or fear of the unknown, triggering our conditioned tendencies of fight, flight, freeze or appease.
When we react in the moment with our conditioned tendencies, we hold our breath, tense up, lose our footing, narrow the focus of our attention on the point of contact, and shut down our consideration of creative choices. Our impulse is to make something happen to return us to our previous state and situation.
We can become intent on regaining what was lost. Our emotional responses and the narrative story in our heads develop into a mindset that judges change harshly, locking us into positions of resistance. We develop habits, automated routines for responding to cues that trigger us, to react to changes without consciously being aware of what’s happening.
The problem is when we fall into a state of reacting, we lose our capacity to grow and create. As Mitsugi Saotome observed, “change is life, and the ability to change is the essential element of growth.”
It is easy to think the problem is with other people, processes or systems, and spend our time attempting to manage and control them vs. exploring how we can change and grow to lead creatively. A first step is to observe how we react to change.
- The last time you slipped on some ice or a wet surface, how did you react?
- When a family member suggests a change to your plans, how do you react?
- When a change at work affects you, how do you react?
- When a change in your community affects you, how do you react?
- How are you reacting to the recent election outcome?
Fortunately, we have the capacity to respond to change creatively inherent within us. Neuroplasticity enables the neurons in our body to adjust our responses to new situations and changes in our environment throughout our lives. We can change the story narrative in our heads, adjust our mindsets, and replace old habits that no longer serve us effectively with new habits that do.
Our opportunity is to embrace change and consciously choose our future. By embracing change, and learning to dance with life as it comes at us, we open the door to responding creatively.
What helps you embrace change and lead creatively?
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