I have been through many changes in life, from going away from my birth country as a teenager to moving across states and taking jobs in fields that I have little knowledge of. Although looking back, I can wholeheartedly say that changes are good for me and fuel my growth; changes are always hard. Changes bring about new ideas and fresh perspectives. Changes open up new chapters and new opportunities. Changes also remind us not to take things for granted, to question the status quo, and to begin anew. Yet changes can Hurt. As a human being, I have feeling, and maybe even more so than a typical person; I have lots of feeling. One of my core values is love, and I strive to bring love into everything I do and treat people around me with genuine love. As I put my heart into my work and people around me, I somehow develop this feeling that we will be together forever, and we will build this future/this work group/this company together, and that I will forever be serving in the same capacity. So, when people move or when I move, or when there are organizational changes where people shift responsibility or leave, I am hurt each and every time.
How do you and I deal with changes?
1. Be still and know that you are still you.
There are always external stimuli. But, there is always an internal core you. It doesn’t matter what external stimuli are changing, you are still you from the day before to the day after. The knowledge, wisdom, character and strength that you possess are still in you. No external condition and no one can take that inner core you away from you. The external circumstances can change, can shake, can move; but, the inside of you is stable and solid like a mountain. You can bring that stableness to face the moving/changing circumstances, and you can bring your knowledge, strength and character to create value in each and every situation. The constant factor is you, and none can change you but you. You can grow, can adapt, and can choose to be a positive force no matter what happen.
I love the book “Man Search for Meaning” from Victor Frankl. Victor’s life was changed tremendously when the Nazi came and put him and his family into concentration camp. He lost everything from his intellectual properties to his loved ones, and even his name was taken away from him. Yet, even in that situation, he knew that he had the power to choose to be a value adder to all around him.
2. Take inventory and help others.
List all the reasons why changes are good for you and others. List the reasons in specific details, and review the list every day. Make a commitment to help and support all those around you through the changes. Reach out across all parties and let them know that you are here to help. Encourage them and remind them of the positive reasons for changes. When you are busy helping others around you, you have less time to be self-pity. By helping others, you are actually helping yourself. You can’t feel gloomy and down while trying to help others and lift others up. By repeating the positive reasons for change, you reinforce your beliefs and program your brain to look for opportunities in the situation. You think in Abundance.
3. Have Faith
Throughout human history, there are many changes. Some changes are good such as the industrial revolutions or the shift from horse carriages to automobiles. Some changes are bad such as wars and recessions. However, as you look at the entire human history over a long period of time, things are definitely moving for the better. Less people die of childbirth and malnutrition. More people have access to clean water, electricity, health care and education. It seems that despite some horrific events, things always come out for the better. People unite, recharge, learn from the past, and become stronger. When change happens, that’s when your character is tested and that’s when resilience is shown. When change happens, that’s when we learn about ourselves, our passion, and our values. So, when you and I are going through tough changes, bring our best games, with a desire to help others, to serve and have faith in the process.
Changes often hurt. During changes, people are moving away, and you are put into new circumstances. When you have devoted your soul and heart into the causes and the people, having those moved away can make you devastated. However, you must know that changes will bring out the positive outcome, and your job is to make sure that you will come out stronger, better. In time of changes, do the following:
1. Be still and know that you are still you from the day before to the day after, regardless of the external stimuli.
2. Take inventory of all good reasons for change, and help others.
3. Have faith that the final outcome will be good.
I hope you and I will become stronger and better through all the changes in our lives.