If things are going well, and all is good, there is no reason for change. But if things are not going well, it’s probably a good time to think about change. Necessity is often the catalyst of change.
The thing about change is that it can come in many forms. Let’s say you are struggling in your job. Without change, things remain the same. If you are miserable, and do nothing, one year from now, you will probably be just as miserable (and likely worse). So, you might say that things must change. But what kind of change? First thought might be to quit. That’s a change. Maybe working toward another position within the same company. That’s a change. Or taking classes to position yourself for advancement within that company or to get into a whole different field? That’s a change. What about focusing on what you do like about the job? That’s a change.
To change, just for change sake, often leads to the need for more change. Saying things like I have to get out of this place, or I can’t be here anymore, are definitely a start, but it is essential to look beyond that and define what it is you really do want.
I have seen many people change jobs, only to end up with the same frustrations and unfulfillment. I have seen many who have left one relationship because they were miserable, only to end up in another miserable relationship. And I have seen many move to a new house or city because the house or city they were in wasn’t good enough, only to end up in a different house or city with the same problems.
The flip side of that is not changing. Many people accept their current situation, despite being miserable, because they either do not want to change, are afraid of change, or, what I believe is the most common, don’t recognize the need for change. If you are using phrases such as… it’s not terrible… it could be worse… I’m getting by… I’m doing better than a lot of people… that is a red flag. Merely getting by in a job, a relationship, financially, spiritually, and with your health, is not good enough. There are times when just getting by is okay, as we all hit tough times, but to remain there should be intolerable.
One more thing about change… It takes time, but it doesn’t. What does that mean? All change does take time. You won’t change your body overnight. Most don’t amass a fortune in one day. And broken relationships require time to mend and improve. So understanding that time is required for change will prepare you to be patient and will help prevent frustration and discouragement.
However, the start of true change happens in an instant. The moment you say enough is enough and fully commit to making things different, you’ve changed. And it happens in just that… a moment.
Take a moment and look at your life. Look at the work you are doing. The relationships you are in. Your current level of health. Look at all the things that are really important to you. Are they in need of change? Are they just good enough? Are they not terrible? Or are they thriving? If change needs to be made (and remember this does not mean simply quitting a job or walking out on your spouse!), commit first to making that change. Then start changing. And remember… why change? Because merely getting by isn’t good enough. Your work, relationships, finances, and health deserve better.