A little over a year ago, I did a presentation on “Effectively Dealing with Change” for a group of teachers from a school in Grass Valley. Within the opening minutes, as I was introducing the topic, a person asked the question: “Do you know something we don’t?” I suppose she really wanted to know if I was prepping them for some impending change.
Truthfully, I was there because of a common phenomenon that happens in schools and businesses around the globe: When people are presented with change, they automatically resist. New programs, initiatives, ideas, processes, and ways of thinking are often met with the answer, “No!.”
Within the 3 weeks after that presentation, schools closed due to COVID-19, their principal announced her retirement, and the superintendent took a job elsewhere.
Change stops for no one! But that doesn’t mean we can’t move forward successfully.
Some people (including many in my audience that day) view change as life altering doom. They liken change to a dream in which you are crossing a bridge high above a river valley and the bridge disappears, leaving you to fall into the valley below.
As you may well know, I see change a bit differently. I liken it to a river, alternating between straits and twists, calm and turbulent, peaceful and terrifying. But, no matter the condition of the river, it always moves toward its destination. It provides both continuity and change. Change doesn’t put the ground out from beneath us, unless we let it.
The coming year will bring change, both here at VLC and in our personal lives. How it affects us is largely based on how we view it. Will we choose to paddle through the rapids, or fall into a river canyon? I hope you will join me in paddling, sometimes slowly, and sometimes with great intensity, but paddling nonetheless.
Through change we can continually move forward.
What types of changes have challenged you the most?
Were they challenging because of the severity of the change or because of how you viewed the change?
Looking back from where you are now, were those changes positive?
Have a great week!
John Maxwell Certified Coach, Trainer, Speaker, and DISC consultant
Author: Change? Whiskey Tango Foxtrot!?
“They themselves are makers of themselves.” James Allen