When Change is Hard, But Necessary
It’s not uncommon that change is often paired with feelings of fear and discomfort. Whether it’s a change of job, a change of where you live, a new personal goal (i.e. lose 40lbs), or a change of something as simple as furniture arrangement, change is hard!
Leo Buscaglia once wrote, “Change is the end result of all true learning” and that’s exactly the direction I want to take this post, to understanding how learning and change are necessary companions.
Why do we hate change? Here’s a few reasons:
Do you fear failure? Discover how to embrace failure!
Fear of failure
Uncomfortable or painful
May require more effort
People might criticize us
It’s just different
Out of all those fears, I want to focus on one in particular: fear of failure.
A lot of fears from change can be derived from fear of failure. Maybe you’re afraid of the change you’ll experience after graduating high school and going to college. You might fail your classes, or fail at making friends, or simply fail at being independent. Or maybe you’re changing jobs from a familiar work-load to an unknown, more challenging work-load. You might be afraid of failing your co-worker's or boss’s expectations, or not having the right training to succeed at your job. The point is, whatever the situation, fear of failure is behind most change.
Video rental company, Blockbuster, wasn’t exempt from fear of failure. After being a thriving company for nearly 25 years, Blockbuster went bankrupt in 2010 and was quickly overtaken by Netflix. Why did this happen? Pretty simply, CEO of Blockbuster John Antioco was afraid of change.
In the year 2000, Reed Hastings, founder of Netflix, flew to Blockbuster headquarters to propose a partnership between Netflix and Blockbuster. His proposal was met with laughs and rejection. So Hastings developed Netflix, and has made it into an incredibly profitable company worth over $28 billon. Because of Blockbuster’s fear of change, they went bankrupt.
I’d like to make a point that we’re no different than Blockbuster. We know things in our life that need to change, but we’re too afraid of failing, or that we’ll meet an uncomfortable outcome.
Regardless of our fear, the truth still remains:
we must change in order to grow, in order to learn.
George Bernard Shaw writes profoundly that, "Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”
Maybe your marriage isn’t going well, or your grades are low. Perhaps your not doing great at work, or you’re weight is at an all-time high. It’s easy to blame someone else for our problems. But the truth is, you need to change. Contrary to popular belief, you aren’t perfect the way you are.
So what will you do? Ignore change because it’s to hard, flee from your fears in order to protect yourself? The consequence of not changing are often more costly than having pursued change willingly.
Here’s where the application comes in: write down a few things that aren’t going well in your life, or things you’ve always dreamed of pursuing.
Here’s a few ideas to get you started:
New business opportunity
Now, it’s time to get real and look at yourself straight in the mirror and answer these questions:
What is something I could do to change these for the better?
If I didn’t change anything, what would be the consequences?
If I push past my fears, what’s the worst that can happen to me?
In order to be successful or improve these areas of my life, I must change ____________.
You’ve just started the process of change. Although it’s scary, it’s necessary! Get busy, be honest with yourself, and don’t be like Blockbuster.