he last time I underwent a change this year, a personal change, was when I launched my podcast channel. I always knew I could do this but never got myself to do it. There was the fear of failure, shame and embarrassment, but there was also paralysis analysis. Each day though, change is around me. At times it is forced on me, at other times it beckons me from that still small voice in my instinct.
That change is a paramount thing in our lives is an irrefutable fact. What varies though is our capacity to embrace change. Some people take lots of time to change. Others refuse completely to change until the very last minute. By that time, lots of opportunities have been lost to steer your life in the right direction. However, there are others who readily embrace change. They take the least time possible to notice what needs to change and go for it. I have noticed that they do have the benefits of change at the back of their minds.
The Benefits of Change
There are three major benefits that change will bring you. The question though is: When will these benefits start accruing? This question does not have any immediate answer. The benefits that change will bring your way will depend on a few factors:
- How fast you embrace the change
- Your attitude towards the change phases: just before, at the beginning, during and after the change
- Your ability to build capacity during the change phases
- Your ability to recruit and find help
These are the three major change benefits.
1. Internal Change
Most of the people who have ever gone through a drastic and painful change will tell you something like this: "I do not ever want to go through that ever again, but most certainly, I can never give up the lessons I learnt during that period for anything". Change most certainly introduces you to yourself. You start looking at life from the angle of essence, meaning and purpose. Coach John Wooden famously said:
"Adversity is the state in which man most easily becomes acquainted with himself being especially free from admirers then"
The fact of the matter is that change will never leave you the same internally. The following are some of the internal benefits that accrue from change:
1. Increased Resilience Index
Every time I write on the subject of resilience, I tend to quote Bob Marley who famously said, and I paraphrase:
"You have no idea how strong you are until being strong is the only option you have"
The person who has gone through the process of change is much more resilient than the person who has shied away from it. Change wants to toughen you and makes you stronger. A singer sang and said:
"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger"
This is an internal change. By the way, some of these strengths we get from change cannot be found in any other way...that is how interesting it is. So next time you are shielding your child from a tough situation, please try to notice what you are trying to deny your child...but I digress. For the most part, the strongest people you have seen in terms of resilience are those who have gone through change, and at times that change was either uncomfortable or out rightly painful.
2. Increases Personal Power
Thomas Edison said it best when he quipped:
"If we did all the things we are capable of doing we would literally astound ourselves"
Have you ever astounded yourself? I can guarantee you if you did, it was most probably after a change process that you undertook. Richard Branson is famed to teach that if you are given a responsibility for which you are incapable of doing, you should take it up and grow through it. That is what change can do. After it is through with you, your personal power is increased to such an extent that your self concept, self esteem and self worth get a shot in the arm. These three things suffer the most when you decline to take change.
3. Increases Mental Toughness
A while ago, we did a very long series on the subject of mental toughness. Mental toughness is absolutely important in life and for everyone who wants to get the best out of their potential. However, change is something that is smack in the middle of mental toughness. As a matter of fact, there is no mental toughness that you can get if you are not embracing change. Experience truly is the best teacher but you will not experience a thing unless you have gone through a change.
Related Read: 5 Key Life Areas You Can Use Mental Toughness
Why People Do Not Love Internal Benefits
To be honest with you, people would rather see material or monetary benefits. That is why many do not embrace change. If they cannot put a monetary benefit to the change that they are going through, people would rather not go through it. That is a wrong approach of life. You see, what you get internally in terms of your capacity is what gets you the material and the monetary gain.
We shall continue with these thoughts in the next article.