"You must be willing to let go of the idea that how you currently see it is the right or only way to see it."
Are You Willing?
At the beginning of every year, most people have their attention on change of some sort. Whether you call them resolutions, goals, objectives, strategic plans or something else the point is to change how it is to how you’d like it to be. The sense of a clean slate at the beginning of the new year seems to inspire this desire for change.
Recently I saw a statistic stating that 80-85% of New Year’s resolutions were abandoned by January 15. In my experience, what is most often missing is slowing down enough – physically and mentally – to examine what the desired change will mean for you and your organization. Said another way what’s the impact, perceived ramifications or possibilities of the change?
The key to lasting or permanent change is asking some key questions at the start.
First, are you willing to see life differently?
The way you’ve looked at life, the situation or your organization, i.e., your point of view, has gotten you this far. Are you willing to question your perspective and possibly give up the familiar or known for a whole new possibility? Most people aren’t. Most people are too afraid of being wrong to question their perspective. Breakthrough results are not possible without a willingness to let go of the comfortable, familiar patterns to experiment and invite new thinking.
As Einstein said, “You cannot solve a problem from the same level consciousness that created it. You must learn to see the world anew.” Consider if you truly knew how to achieve the goal or resolution you would have done so by now. In order to achieve lasting change new thinking is required. Human beings have an infinite capacity for new thought however in order to access it you must be willing to let go of the idea that how you currently see it is the right or only way to see it.
You must be willing to let go of the idea that how you currently see it is the right or only way to see it.
Second, are you willing to live life differently?
Once you start seeing life differently new ideas for action, new possibilities for achieving the change you seek will emerge. Many if not most of these ideas may seem radical or outside your comfort zone. A willingness to experiment is required to cause lasting change. Experimenting means you have to be willing and open to learning, taking new actions and then seeing what happens. When you are experimenting, you understand that not everything is going to turn out as expected.
Sometimes you win & sometimes you learn.
All change requires a willingness to be on a learning curve. The most difficult part of the process sometimes is having to be a novice again. Let’s face it, you’ve mastered the way you have been doing it but if you aren’t getting the results you want it’s time to let go of the old beliefs and make way for some new ones.
Remember the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. A willingness to take action on the new insights and ideas, even if they don’t immediately make sense is part of creating lasting change.
Lastly, are you willing to have the result you want?
This question may seem strange, but we promise you if you slow down and ponder it, you might be surprised by your response. Recently, when asking a client this question, his initial response was a resounding “Yes”. However, when we slowed down, he actually saw that he had a lot of stressful thoughts around his goal. Thoughts like, “What if I can’t handle it and fail, what will people think?” and “What if other members in the organization disagree or dislike the changes? I don’t like conflict.”, etc. etc. Once these thoughts came to light, he could see them as merely thoughts, not reality. The nature of thought is that it’s transient; it is energy moving through the brain. It is not reality. This allowed him to freely take action and play the game of achieving his goal full out.
Authentically answering the three key questions outlined above will create a strong foundation to support you in achieving lasting change. Be sure to take the time to thoughtfully consider them.