OK, so back to the three little words theme, at least for today. I thought I’d change things up, because – change is good.
Actually, change is scary for most. Taking a new route means venturing into territory that you are unfamiliar with. Changing how you look means trying things that may not work out as you thought. Changing from a daily routine, means having to establish a new context for your day. All of those things bring uncertainty with them and out of uncertainty grows doubt and out of doubt grows fear. That is why we avoid changes, even though, change is good.
Why do I keep saying that change is good, even in the face of the uncertainty, doubt and fears that is conjures up? It’s because, change is necessary for learning. Going on to new things and forging ahead into uncharted territory is how we learn. Doing the same things over and over and following the same routine may allow us to get better at what we always do; that’s how some athletes, such as figure skaters, get to a higher level in their “routines”. They are called routines for a reason. They are the same time after time and eventually the skater gets better at performing the routine. But it is often the skater who tries something new, some new combination of jumps or adding one more revolution to a jump, who ends up winning and establishing a new standard. They tried something out of the routine and won because change is good.
I’m not espousing change for change’s sake, just the embrace of change when it makes sense, instead of the fear of change. It makes no sense to just decide that you are tired of driving on the right-hand side of the road and so you’ll change to driving on the other side; yet some people make arbitrary decisions to change some things with the same logic (or lack of logic). The word “capricious” was invented for them. They are not making good changes in their lives, just changes for change sake; sometimes they make changes just to see what happens. For them change can lead to disaster and they may never understand that, done properly, change is good.
I recall periods in my life when I became a slave to routine. I would do the same thing each day, eat the same foods, keep the same schedule. It was comfortable. It didn’t require me to think, too much. It was easy. Then, I’d become aware of the rut that I was in and change something; usually something small in the beginning. After I got through first small change and the world didn’t come to an end, I might change other things or maybe everything. Career changes were the toughest. It’s hard to abandon a job or profession that you’ve become so used to doing every day and maybe even become proficient at doing. It’s scary to think of the learning curve that you’ll need to get over to go into a new career; but, at the same time it’s exciting. It exhilarates to think of learning new things, meeting new people, exploring new options. Soon you’ll love the changes because change is good.
But, what of your relationships with those that you love? Must those change, too? I would submit that they too must be subject to constant change. It’s not that you need to seek new people, it’s really that you need to continue to explore new avenues of the relationships that you have, do new things with them, constantly be aware of the need to examine the routines that you fall into and bring change into them. Have you become completely predicable? Does that predictability border on boredom? What things can you change about how you interact with your loved one to bring back some excitement and increase their interest in the relationship? Why aren’t you doing any of those things? Change things up a bit and see if the spark of change reignites a relationship that may have been reduced to just smoldering along. Embrace change in the relationship, because change is good.
A good way to start embracing change is to examine your daily routine. We all have a daily routine. Examine why you have that routine. For many the start of every day is about doing the same things over and over each day in order to get to work at exactly the same time. Why? Will the world stop if you get there a few minutes early or a few minutes later? Maybe you have to “clock in” and there would be consequences if you are late. Then change your routine to get there earlier. Perhaps you’d discover that there are people that you would have tome to chat with if you were there earlier. They’ve been there all along, but they were not a part of your routine. You may some new friends by just changing your morning routine. You’ll be happier and begin to understand why change is good.
Once you begin to embrace change look for other areas of your life that could use a breath of the fresh air of change. Most likely those will involve your relationships with others. How long has it been since you went out on a Ladies Night Out with your girlfriends? When was the last time that you played a pick-up basketball game with your buddies? How long ago was it when you last stopped on the way home to pick up a bouquet of flowers for your wife? When was the last time that you suggested going to a weekend football game with your husband? Those aren’t things you might normally do; they are changes and change is good.
Have a great day, but make at least one change in your routine today and see if it makes you feel a little different; hopefully a little better. Routines are comfortable, so you may have to leave that comfort zone a bit. I suspect just the adrenaline shot that you get from that change alone will make some small difference. You may even like it and want to experience it again; and out of that you will start to see that change is good.