Tag Archives: Comfort zones

Change under crisis or constraint is compelling; but it is costly n chaotic!

abc“Change” is the most celebrated term in corporate life, leadership circles, professional and personal lives and even in country governance across the globe. Most people take pride in speaking for change, but fall short is imbibing and implementing it. Many talk about it but don’t know what to do with it.

An aspirant gets a new job of his choice and hence he loves it and puts in hard work. Years pass by and his conviction gets consolidated that he would never like to leave such a job. His management starts to perceive him as a liability; but he believes in his loyalty and one fateful day, he faces termination.

You develop a taste for sugar coated donuts and get hooked to eating couple of them every morning. You believe you are young with no family history of blood sugar problem; so, why not enjoy it. In time to come, you discover alarmingly high level of blood sugar and then you start spending time and money on medical experts and medicines; at the same time, you find it painful to miss taste of donuts.

Look at the iconic companies like General Motors, Ford, Siemens, BlackBerry and many more. These organizations did not change in or with time and hence faced blow to their businesses or serious crisis, resulting into painful restructuring, sell offs or even closure of several of their units.

Rise of right wing voices or parties in USA, Europe and Brexit are clear indications of ruling parties giving a cold shoulder to changing their policies in time and now their people are forcing them to change albeit in wrong direction.

Is it not a clear indication that waiting for crisis to come and then change is very costly and complex? Very often, changing under constraints may not be a blessing but a bane.

Why “Change” receives more of lip service than living examples

It has become a fashion to talk about change; but hardly anyone is willing to walk for a change. Celebrities proudly pronounce “Change is the only constant in Universe”, not knowing what exactly it means. Change is a continuum; not a constant. Universe actually has no constant.

Then, we are ever ready to pass our sermons how and why others should change, forgetting that if we want to change others, that change has to first originate from us. A step ahead, people talk about grand changes in systems at company, community or country level; but most prefer to be spectators and fight shy of becoming part of system. Unless you become part of change, bringing change is only a pipe dream.

In more than 90% of cases, it is a decorative word in speeches and essays, until crisis descends.

Biggest confusion is “Why and what change”

Homilies aside, herds hardly understand correct definition of change!

Nothing is static around us. We and our environments are continuously changing. So, change is nothing but adjusting to changes happening internally and externally to us with time, so that we can accomplish our short and long term goals in least time and resistance.

So first of all, to talk of change without your goals in mind is foolhardy. Then comes, identifying what incremental changes have happened in and around you, followed by planned steps to effect the change.

Crisis comes out, when accumulated changes crash the system

By and large, people like to be inert to changes, because of inertia that they develop from their comfort zones.

Changes not made but accumulated over time burst out in form of crisis or even conflicts. You or people at large than have no choice or time but brace or face changes thrust upon you. You like it or not, such forced changes are bound to be painful; some of these may be right but a lot would not be. You would react against such forced changes; but would have no recourse left and hence, these become chaotic.

Changing by choice is indeed chaste

Very fact that change is continuum tells us that we must live side by side of changes that are arising and align with them in time. This alone can make us very efficient, ebullient and agile.

Changing by choice makes the Change a pleasure and not pain; it can be a nice asset but never liability.

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Why history repeats by itself at professional and personal levels!

Reminiscent of history! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

A survey shows that about two third people around the world believe that history always repeats by itself; but one third not!

Fact is history does repeat time and again at micro and macro levels, albeit it does not replicate exactly. Its tendencies and trends, types and turn of events are similar in nature.

Famous US President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in a theater by a man, who fled to a warehouse. Another well-known US President John F. Kennedy was assassinated by a man from a warehouse, who then fled to a theater! Turn the pages of history of several battles fought; it repeatedly shows that one side in the battles was generally outmanned and outgunned, but it always managed to win the battle because it had better leadership! Every era of peace and prosperity has been followed by era of turmoil and troubles and vice versa. Countries, companies and individuals – leaders or preachers alike look invincible during their hay days; but become vulnerable and gullible soon thereafter. Inflation is followed by deflation in country economics and then inflation raises its head again. Cycles of historical highs and lows keep repeating unabated!

You feel hungry at 5 p.m. and treat yourself with junky food. Next morning, you read in newspaper how junk food junks your health and you decide not to eat it again. But again that afternoon, at 5 p.m., you end up eating junk food.

As per famous American author Mark Twain, no occurrence is sole and solitary, but a mere repetition of a thing which has happened before and perhaps more often!

Negative historical events seem to repeat more frequently than positive ones!

Have you notices that? Historical records point to same – wars, accidents, natural calamities, rebellions, deaths, setbacks and sicknesses!

My great grandfather died before my great grandmother. Someone had told my grandfather that history would repeat with him. It got stuck in his mind as worry for remainder of his life and he did die before my grandmother!

If a father became bankrupt in his business, one of his children in business would also become bankrupt in future!!

Reasons why history repeats!

Where do events, which occur, get stored? Are heavenly hands responsible to recall history? Astrology would dispose it is repeat positioning of planets that makes a given event to repeat!

Don’t be surprised to know – every day you repeat more than 90% of things that you did yesterday like getting up in the morning around the same time, brushing teeth and having breakfast in hurry, driving on the road with similar frame of mind – agitated or assuaged to your behavior at work. If this is the case, nearly 90% of things that happen to you would be a repeat of past.

Now, when large number of people do the similar things as above, then lot of events that are likely to happen at larger levels would also be same – simplest examples are cleanliness, traffic congestion, temperament or culture of public etc.!

Logically, repetition of history is not metaphysical or mysterious phenomena. History or past is not stored anywhere in nature or universe but in your own mind. It repeats, simply because consciously or unconsciously you repeat your thoughts and actions, regardless these are positive, negative or neutral, to the extent of 90%!

When you repeatedly think same, you are bound to attract similar events or environments that you have witnessed in past. Conversely, similar events would revive your memory or thoughts. That is why some scenes always tend to instill fear or some faces or faiths invoke prejudices in you!

Why we tend to repeat, more so what is negative or wrong!

  1. Inertia
    Like gravitational force, inertia is prevalent in every object, leave alone humans. So what we start, we tend to continue, unless we decidedly act against it.
  2. Comfort zones
    We have strong tendency to develop our comfort zones and then, feel cozy in same, since we start to like those and feel secured.
  3. Habits, traits and beliefs
    Above 2 points give birth to our habits, traits and beliefs. These 3 attributes have great influence on our repeat thinking and behavior.
  4. Falling prey to negatives
    We are more emotional than rational. Therefore, we are vulnerable to negativity and that makes us very conscious of same. Negativity at individual or mass level is the precise reason, why negative historical events occur more than positive ones, as mentioned above!
  5. Ego and biases
    All of above points promote ego and biases in us, which in turn prompt contradictions and conflicts.
  6. Ideas and images at the back of our mind
    This is a major revelation – you can’t estimate enormity of things at back of your mind! Call it back of your mind, memory storage or subconscious mind; what reside there regulate your moves. You decide to keep only positive memories and discard the rest; but you would realize soon that negative memories still reside and those become active, when you see anything negative. Your drive against what you don’t like keeps same very thing live and lingering.
    Mind knows only to store or ignore; would not differentiate good or bad, positive or negative, when it comes to storing! So, decision to keep only right things does not help; only ignoring does!! Is not amazing?
    What resides at back of your mind is single biggest factor behind your repeat behavior and stimulates history to repeat. 

This brings us to very striking conclusion – what you repeat is not a Change and hence Change is only one that can repel events, you don’t relish! And if you want to reverse the history, work on above 6 points relentlessly!!

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