There is only one constant we can rely on in our world and that is change. I am often astounded by the reactions when people are taken by surprise when something happens. These reactions/overreactions can be observed every day whether it is just the smallest annoying change to enormous world shattering events. The human condition, it seems craves certainty and predictability with just a touch enough excitement so things aren’t too boring.
So how do you cope with change?
I think it is safe to say that as we get older our ability to cope with change diminishes. A child from the day it is born has nothing else to do other than cope with constant change. We call this change process, “learning”. This is a process of observations, experimentation and experiences to learn coping strategies and processes to deal with other people and situations. See as evidence how quickly a child picks up on using a computer, a games console or the DVD player. Our ability to adapt quickly to change and learn diminishes every day during childhood until we reach that period called “teenager” when apparently we attain all of the world’s knowledge overnight!!! Later, when it dawns on us that apparently that is not the case we actually find out how little we know.
Change becomes a challenge when our strategies and processes are unable to successfully deal with the consequences of the change. As an adult challenges such as relationships, work, finances and time management become all-consuming and our ability to cope means some of us either rise to meet it or in the worst of situations fall to the depths of despair. All of us have seen it before, one person’s inspirational story of courage in the face of overwhelming adversity and their triumph in their successes. Or that other hand, an individual who seems to have everything going for them, who let their life spiral into never ending trouble and despair and in the worst of cases ends up taking their own life.
Our day to day life is really just one long process of change and our challenge is processing this and acting in a way that we get a satisfactory if not brilliant outcome. To me this is quite a profound distinction, realising that my life is controlled by a series of change processes and conditions. I can use this knowledge to create a simple template for designing a coping strategy for change of any size. All I need to do is complete a series of steps and questions to address the issues some of which might include:
- Identify the aspects of the challenge
- What knowledge do I have now to address the challenge?
- What knowledge don’t I have and where will I find it?
- Decide on my strategy
- Implement my strategy
- Measure and test the results and refine my strategy where necessary
As a company T3 Australia has been created and designed around the above questions and processes to be, in essence, a “solutions company”. We provide tools and knowledge to help businesses and individuals cope with change and the challenges that confront them.
Your choice in life is to be proactive or reactive. Sometimes in life stuff happens and massive change and upheaval can happen in an instant. Other changes creep up on you with plenty of warning if you are observant. You can proactively address change issues by arming yourself with tools and knowledge today. It makes sense to examine all aspects of your life to identify immediate and longer term challenges and begin addressing them today with a plan and well thought strategies. Challenges that people confront every day include:
Will I have a job tomorrow?
Am I going broke or is debt killing my financial security?
How much money will I have for my retirement or for goals and plans in my future?
Do I desire a change in career?
Do I have the time to do my relationships justice?
These are examples of the reality of our lives. In the end you future will be decided by your choices, your actions, your plans and ultimately by your determination.
Sure, change can be daunting, but it also brings with it excitement, opportunity and potential to be somebody great. A chance to become an individual with a passion, a mission and a purpose and someone who chooses to have freedom to decide their own future .
Embrace a proactive attitude. Take responsibility for change and take action on designing your life, your way and anticipate great things.