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“Heart of the Matter,” Professional (change) Version

43-Old Truck

The concept of change often conjures up a visceral response for people. We humans like certainty, we want to control (though most of us, myself included, would acknowledge that many things are out of our control), we often avoid surprises.  In the last several years, change in the professional world has been a constant.

How have things changed in your world since 2009? I invite you to make a list of the changes that have occurred in the last four years (or even 1 year); once you have it review it for pros and cons. On the front side of change, in the uncertain period, fear is often present, On the back side, there is often joy, gratitude, cause for celebration. How many times have you heard someone say, “I’m so glad that relationship ended” or “losing my job was the best thing that happened to me?”  I daresay that on the front side of either of those life events, I wonder if the same person was in appreciation or celebration mode.

In so many professional settings (professional, never mind, in life), change is constant. My work with a  team that is facing significant change revealed that while there is some concern…mostly for people involved whose roles will change…overall the team welcomes the change. Most members see it as an opportunity for growth; there is more excitement than fear. How healthy is that? The mood of the team about the changes speaks volumes to how everyone will experience the new way.

Inviting each team member to select an image and use it to share how she/he reacts to change revealed optimism … and more enthusiasm than fear.  They shared expressions like,

  • “while change can be hard, the rainbow says there is always hope”
  • “the bare tree will change … either fall over because its outlived its purpose or it may have dropped seeds that will bear new growth … think about, a forest started with only one tree”
  • “the rocks allow us to move on a solid foundation into new possibilities”
  • “this old truck reminds me that it is time to clean up, sort through things, find a home for everything, including this truck because it has value to someone”

What change is on the horizon for you? In order to accommodate the new way, what needs to be cleaned up, sorted through? Where is the REAL value for you?

Even in our professional world though we sometimes view change as hard because it involves layoffs, job loss which upends our world, in the rear view mirror, it is often “the best thing that could have happened to me.”

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