In a recent blog on this subject a couple of weeks ago I wrote about crisis. Here’s a few more thoughts about change!
If you are experiencing a crisis at the moment would it help to know that it’s a normal part of life that moves us from good to great? Innovation in the marketplace continues and with each new iteration comes a crisis, which, as we embrace it, accelerates us into areas where we have been dragging our heels a bit. Crisis crystallizes what we really want.
So what happens to us in a crisis? We have to look for answers – a way out, and the more people we open up to, the more minds we can get on it, the more likely we are to put a plan in place and change. Some vulnerability is required and we need people around the problem, we can’t just hide from it.
Crisis is never too far away and the average business leader or entrepreneur experiences a crisis of sorts at least once every three months. So how can we make crisis work for us as a catalyst in a change reaction?
Definition of catalyst:
Something that causes activity between two or more persons or forces without itself being affected.
Crisis is the catalyst that motivates us to make a transition. If you need a bigger house, the crisis is the lack of space. It’s the catalyst which speeds up the move.
The biggest innovations in my life started off as crises, but when I decided to embrace them they brought change and opportunities.
When I met my beautiful wife it came through a crisis. She was questioning life itself. She said, There has to be more to life than this!’, (Even a cool rich dude like myself wasn’t enough). It was a crisis moment for me, but in the midst of it, I picked up my dormant faith and embraced a journey of discovery. Off we went to make some intentional, purpose-led decisions. My mind was saying, ‘Stay in your job! You are about to run with world class clients and win some awards to match.’ Only problem was our clients (tobacco and alcohol giants) had more to do with ending peoples’ lives than celebrating them. In my heart I knew it was wrong. What a catalyst that was for change in my life! Nine months later I was married and doing what I really wanted, starting out on the long path to building our own brand marketing agency.
If we want different results we have to change. We have to embrace the quest for better, there has to be a cycle of innovation.
We need to change, and it is possible! Sometimes it’s not until crisis happens that the changes we knew we should have made already are actually forced upon us. We’ll eat junk until the doctor finds our cholesterol is too high. Then, finally we make the necessary changes.
Not everyone likes change because it’s uncomfortable. We might as well get used to it though, as at some point crisis is going to invade, and no matter how comfortable we make our lives, a transition will always be required.
Personally, I’ve accepted change as part of life’s process. It was hard at first but eventually I learned to adapt. I remember losing my hair. Ultimate moment of crisis! I thought that I was going to look horrid with no hair but it wasn’t too bad once I’d gotten over the initial shock. Now, when people see old photos of me with hair they think I look odd with it! My mum still says if I keep cutting it, it will grow back but I know she’s just saying that to encourage me. I know it won’t. The funny thing was, I always thought I could have been the cause of my own hair loss….
It was like this… in my early 20’s I was angry with God for a whole sackful of reasons. One summer, I found myself in Rome as a tourist doing the Vatican tour. It was hot, and I was inside St Peter’s Basilica, climbing to the top. As a silent protest against God I used the holy water to do my hair! In the years that followed all my hair fell out. It felt almost as if it wasn’t me having the last laugh!! Having read a bit around the subject of hair loss I now know different. The point I’m trying to make is that when I embraced baldness as a fact of my life it had some undeniable advantages. Great savings at the barbers, greatly reduced personal grooming time in the mornings (more time in bed) and no more trying too hide the fact that I was going bald – what a relief!
Fast forward a few years from the angry young man at the Vatican and I was sat in the car with my girlfriend searching for meaning in life. A few years further on from that and we had three children and a business. We have learned to embrace crisis to transition out of one thing and into the next.
The problem with change is that things change. Equally, the advantage of change is that things change. So, have you strapped yourself in, ready to embrace a season of change? Why not explore the possibilities out there, they are infinite.