The Courage to Change

I read a quote recently that has really stuck with me:

“We change when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of changing.”

The truth of those words is staggering. There are many things in our lives that are less than perfect. In fact, not one of us will ever become perfect. But what is it that keeps us from changing our lives, from going after progress no matter what the cost? Quite simply, we don’t believe we need to change. Until we have to believe it.

You may struggle your whole life with working well under pressure, and you may even structure your entire existence around non-pressure work situations. This works fine until the day comes (and it will) when your weakness stands in the way of something really important to you (advancement, better salary, respect, growth etc). You have a choice to make: do I want safety or do I want more? As pastor and leadership guru Kevin Meyers often says, “Which more do you want more of?”

Recently I’ve started studying some books on the art of conversation, particularly the types of conversations in which there is much at stake and people can easily become upset. Conversation is something that most of us do naturally, and if you know me you know that I can talk it up with the best of them. But I have always struggled in being assertive about my own feelings while keeping an open mind about the other person’s feelings. I realized that if I continued in my ignorance it would really hurt me in the long run. So I did what any English major would do, I went to the library. I started studying how to have good conversations about the things that matter most. Does it take work? Yes! But it’s work I’m willing to do. Why? Because the pain of staying the same is greater than the work it will take to change.

So what is holding you back? Don’t let laziness or complacency keep you from growth. There are untold possibilities available to you if are willing to step out and change for the sake of getting better. There is great reward on the other side of your efforts.

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PS. If you would like to read on how to have difficult conversations, I found this book to be extremely helpful.

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