Embrace the Change
We are told to ‘embrace change’. Easier said than done for most of us. We naturally wish for a level of consistency and predictability in every aspect of our lives including our business. It is human nature to prefer to feel safe, to be comfortable and avoid threat or danger.
Since humans first walked this earth, survival has always been the first priority, and even the threat of change can trigger our survival instinct. This has always been the case since the beginning of time. Even today, many people still choose to play it safe and avoid taking risks or taking leaps of faith when it comes to their choices in life. As entrepreneurs and small business owners we have the opportunity to experience new ventures that most would never consider.
Change is inevitable. Change is part of life and part of our business. Our perception of change dictates how we navigate change. For some people change represents obstacles and challenges, for other change implies opportunities and growth, a place where excitement and success await. If we wish to step in to our best selves, create our best business and really live up to our potential, change will be required.
Our ability to adapt to change can serves us well in many instances. It speak to our flexibility and how we manage our relationships in our personal lives and our professional lives. Alas, too much adaptability in our business can dictate how we run our business, and being overly accommodating can actually hinder our ability to succeed in the work we are meant to do in this world.
Prioritizing ourselves and our business can prove particularly challenging for those of us who’s passion and calling is to serve others. How do we find that balance between adaptability in serving others and making decisions that are best for ourselves and our business. Are we actively making decision because of what we need (cause) or are we driven to make decision because of what others need (effect). The line between cause and effect can be challenging to navigate.
Let me give you an example: Working at the hospital with patient and a boss required me to constantly adapt and compensate for others within the guidelines of my work. I was rewarded and acknowledged for this behaviour that served my patients and the Doctors I assisted. I learned how to change my behaviour to fit their model of what I needed to be, I was proud to say I excelled in the area of adaptability during my 30 year career in the medical field. I was making decisions in response to the needs of others (I was behaving ‘at effect’).
However as an entrepreneur I soon learned being overly adaptive did not support me in my business . Running a successful business while constantly adapting and accommodating makes it very difficult if not impossible to be successful as an entrpreneur. The adaptability that I felt comfortable with and had served me so well over the years had become my limitation.
The transition from employees to becoming successfully self employed required a change in my behaviour and my skills. The ultimate flexibility, adaptability and responsiveness I had served me so well in my J-O-B was now hindering the success of my business. Something needed to change. My perspective that being more adaptable would create more success needed an upgrade that involved a series of changes, a paradigm shift.
A paradigm shift occurs when our usual way of thinking about or doing something is replaced by a new and different way thinking or acting. Paradigm shifts often occur around what we call an epiphany and we suddenly understand something in a new way or from a different perspective. When I finally realized that saying ‘yes’ to everyones requests and making decisions based on everyone else needs (which put me at effect) created chaos in my business I chose to make a change.
‘The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are.’ Unknown
Entrepreneurs and small business owners face challenges and obstacles on a daily basis; it is part of the ‘territory’. Learning how to make pro-active decision and choices for ourselves and our businesses, which puts us ‘at cause’, gives us back the power to make changes so that we can run our businesses from a very different perspective. Entrepreneurship and small business ownership offers change on a whole different level providing the education and opportunities to fulfil our potential.
Change isn’t a one-time thing, but small changes done regularly in business can have a huge impact. Do you make those changes or simply react or adapt to the changes in your life?
If there were no limitations and no fear of change what would you do to take your business to the next level? What would a great day in your life look like?