The Difficulty of Change

The Difficulty of Change

Every human being knows about change; it happens in their lives whether they want it or not.  And in truth, change is difficult for all of us.  We would all prefer for change to happen more easily and with less impact on our lives.  Unfortunately, change often requires us to deconstruct many aspects of our lives and what we hold to be true about ourselves in order for something new and better to take its place.  Simply put, we must give up what’s old and familiar in order to be ready to take on something new and promising.  This is especially hard when the old we have to give up includes our own limiting beliefs, mindset, attitudes, and accustomed ways of thinking and behaving that feel most comfortable.  Deconstructing our own thought patterns can be so unnerving that we end up resisting change with all our might, preferring to remain in the “comfortableness of our own discomfort” rather than to risk letting go of an old identity that no longer works for us.

Another part of the difficulty of change is the fact that change often catches us completely off guard.  Think about it.  We take painstaking effort to build routine into our lives, to make the world around us somewhat predictable.  Then in one “sudden and enormous gust of wind” all that predictability, all those everyday customs, are swept away in an instant, and we are left to deal with the aftermath of a storm that has completely up-ended our lives.  Certainly, being in this state will bring with it an odd mixture of emotional upheaval and thought-driven response.  Fear of suddenly being worse off than we were mixes with hints of hope that everything will work out for the best.

It seems like an unanswerable contradiction.  On the one hand, we need stability; we need to build our lives around something secure and lasting.  On the other hand, we are forever tossed about in the storms of life changes that require us to not become stagnant.

Clearly we change in little ways all the time, yet still, we struggle with it even though by now we should know from experience that the change we find so difficult to cope with will, in the end, bring about growth.  On the surface change may feel completely disempowering, but behind its dramatic entrance, it more often than not, quietly nudges us down a better path for our lives.

Glenda Thomas

The Difficulty of Change

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