Change Is What You Think It Is

Happy Thanksgiving

To live fully you must learn to welcome and embrace change. Resistance to change won’t kill you, but it will keep you from becoming the person you are meant to be and will cause friction as you try to realize your vision for your business.

The very thought of change creates fear. We want comfort and certainty, even if it means sacrificing the remarkable experiences that wait around every bend on the adventure.

Today is the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States and there are grown men and women in every corner of this great country for whom the entire day will be ruined if they do not eat the exact food, prepared in the exact same way, as every year since they were born.

You’ll find this in business as well. Think about all the times you do something or handle something in a way that you really don’t understand other than the fact that you always do it this way.

Know this, change allows you tread the path you were born to follow and feelings of resistance and fear are nothing more than signals that you are on the right path. The more you fear a certain form of change the more you should rush, headlong in, to embrace it.

Here’s what I think change is:

Change is opportunity – I make my living embracing change because there are those that count on me to make sense of it for them. Every new tool, network and marketing subtlety provides fuel for business opportunity if you can come to view it this way rather than a hurdle to overcome.

Change is energy – Few things are more exhilarating than uncertainty. Even something as simple as trying new foods, taking new routes to familiar places and seeking out new people to engage, can deliver a shot of the kind of fresh energy that snaps you out of the routine and helps you appreciate being present.

Change is growth – In order to make progress in business and life you must be willing to leave one part of yourself behind in favor of change. Little growth occurs in the known. It is only when you push yourself through the fear and are willing to allow yourself to be really, really bad at something that true growth can occur.

Change is possibility – Part of the problem with change is that we don’t know what will happen on the other end. We don’t know if we will be the same person, we don’t know if our friends will still like us, we don’t know if we’ll be thought of as a fool. But, all possibility for living the life we are here to live lies on the other side – all possibility comes from detaching from the fear and inviting change.

Change is purpose – Purpose and passion don’t just happen. They are essential elements of a fully alive person and a fully alive business, but they are works in progress. Connecting with a higher purpose that drives your day to day actions is not something you find in a workshop. It must be given the opportunity to evolve as you discover opportunity, find what creates energy, leave the past behind and open the doors to possibility.

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  • Tea Silvestre, aka Word Chef

    Right on! My tip is — instead of just doing the perfunctory ‘What-I’m-thankful-for’ around the table thing this year, have everyone brainstorm what they’d like to CHANGE. And HOW they think it could be accomplished. Use all that brain power at the dining hour to imagine something better. And then make a pact that this time next year, THAT’s what you’ll be thankful for.

  • Keith West

    All true, but change can also be a pain. For example I don’t think I’ve ever seen an os upgrade worth the risk. I still regret updating to ios4 on my iPhone because of the performance penalty. With so much change everywhere, jumping on every latest thing would impose a huge time penalty. Change, but only with clearly articulated benefits. Of course I rely on scouts like you to tell me when those benefits reach a critical mass.

  • Christer Edman

    Agree completely and would like to add that the ultimate change of our mind is to prepare for our death since it makes every choice more important and we do them wisely without fear. The opposite of fear is Love and when we work in peace and balance with our values and are authentic in every action we will live in a flow of synergies. To become a leader you have to be unique and able to change otherwise you are only following but if you want to follow who do you follow and why?

    • BroodyT

      Good point on the realization of your own short morality…I have been sick for three years, and that battle has left me selfish. It’s only through getting outside yourself that you can make and become changed. Fear is the antithesis to love, and therefore change. Thanks.

  • Ryan Hanley


    I like the concept of Change being Growth.  I work in the Insurance Industry which is not currently known for forward thinking and fresh ideas.  The Insurance game is built on Grinding… Plugging away… That is the way things have been done for 60 years and most professionals in the Industry see no problem with that.  You have to grind out some level of success or you didn’t earn it.

    I try to change the mentality every day.  As an industry insurance needs to change and that change will lead to Growth.  Not that it will be easy…


    Ryan H.

  • Sabrina’s Org & Adm

    Thank you for this objective few on Change!  I will share. 

  • Tom Bond

    Why do people ovedo this holiday?

    Support Costs Guy

  • Henry Louis

    Hi John! It is very interesting to read your opinion about change. I completely agree with your opinion. As you mentioned above, change is an opportunity to prove ourselves.

  • Samantha

    I love your thoughts on change and how they are applicable not only in business, but life in general.  I especially liked the section where you discussed how change is growth.  I find that nowadays people get stuck in a rut or are complacent in where they are in life.  In my opinion, there is always room to grow and improve.  The world is full of possibilities and opportunities, but we can only experience them once we push ourselves to change.  Like the saying goes, “when one door closes, another door opens.”