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Sunday, August 22, 2010

Change....the only constant.....

"Everything you now do is something you have chosen to do. Some people don't want to believe that. But if you're over age twenty-one, your life is what you're making of it. To change your life, you need to change your priorities." - John C. Maxwell 

As the quote says, "some people don't want to believe that".

When I was in my 20's, "change" was something I hated. I was, in my mind, in control of everything in my life. When anything changed, be it a slight change to my work schedule even a change in plans for a vacation, I felt the need to "control" the situation again. Granted, I was able to make the necessary changes to my schedules or whatever it may have been, but I wasn't necessarily happy with it.

The biggest change I underwent, was quitting my job in order to run a martial arts school full time. I was scared....."Quit my job? Are you insane?". In my heart, I knew that committing 100% of my efforts to my new school would be the way to start the marketing and find new students to pay the rent. But, in my mind, I was fighting my refusal to quit my job. I tried to find all sorts of excuses to keep my safety and security of my job, while trying to run a full time school. In the end, I took the plunge, quit my job, and never looked back. The first year of not having that secure income from my job, was very scary. I made use of "101 ways to prepare Top Ramen", and I thought about getting another job. But I knew that if I didn't commit myself and make it work, that my dream of having a full time school would go up in smoke. I was blessed to have a supportive business partner that sometimes had to bring me out of my silent balking at such a big change in my life.

That was in 1991, and in the past 19 years I've learned through trial and error, that change is a much needed thing in order to grow. Change provides us with a different way of looking at things, a fresh method of applying our skills or knowledge, and sometimes, change can bring about challenges that make us buckle down and really think about our next course of action. Change allows us to transform from what we "were", to what we "can become". Change allows us to look at things from the outside-looking-in, instead from our self-absorbed egos. Resistance to change, however, can most times prevent us from realizing our true potential and making meaningful changes to our lives.

Lately, I've realized that change is not necessarily just an outward thing, nor is change a radically different situation or attitude than what I'm used to. I've realized, that over the years, I had changed my outward attitude just to cover up my "inward attitude" (interests and goals that have been put on the backburner). Once I realized that my interests and future goals are not going to completely "change" me into a different person (that, was my fear), nor my friends think I'm crazy for having the interests that I do (another fear!), I was able to "change" yet again, and let go of the fear. What a liberating and transforming experience! This "loosening of the binds", makes me more aware of life's purpose, and made me think a bit more about life's priorities. Life is about choices....we can either make the wrong choices, learn from them and move on, or not pay attention to our choices at all and blame the world for our shortcomings or take credit for the successes. No matter what, our choices and changes determine how we make life out to be.

Sound off!....Have you ever been in that state where "change" was something you resisted? Did you manage to get used to "change"? What was scary about "change"?  How did it make you feel? How have you changed?

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