We could argue that human nature is quite predictable when it comes to change. We want the things in our lives to remain very familiar and stable. From this desire for predictability grows our resistance to change. This resistance can be quite annoying as it often stands in the way of our growth and our success.
Paradoxically, we find ourselves so adverse to change when the very lives we live, even our bodies, are the epitome of change. Every day millions of new cells are formed within us. Our eyes, for example, can register thousands of shifts in the spectrum of colour.
Our tongues are comprised of 10,000 taste buds able to tell apart the most complex assortment of flavours. And of course, it has been said that our brains contain billions of cells in support of our logical and creative functions. In essence, every day is a challenge for us to renew or reinvent ourselves whether it is in our work, our families, our communities and even our bodies.
Our human spirit may be resistant to change, but the question remains:
How can we be more accepting of it?
Resistance to change typically happens when we perceive a threat to who we are and how we have come to define ourselves. The threat may or may not be real, but it doesn’t matter. The resistance is still there and needs to be handled.
The key to dealing with resistance may simply be to accept the fact that resistance is inside of us and is a very natural feeling. Acknowledging that resistance does exist within us, and exerts considerable influence upon us, can help us to begin to minimize it.
By recognizing it, we can also choose to see resistance in a new way. For example, resistance can be seen as a diagnostic tool. When resistance shows up, we immediately know that something isn’t right between our world within and our external world. From this perspective, resistance isn’t necessarily a bad thing, for it signals a time is coming for us to reorient ourselves or a situation.
In times like these, all of us may need a little push toward rekindling who we are and who we will become. Change often makes us feel insecure and uncertain, but without the push to take a risk and make a change, we will never realize even greater gifts that are in store for us. We are prone to sit in the quiet assurance of the eddy rather than venture out into the full force of the raging current even though that is what is needed if we expect to get anywhere.
Perhaps it’s not that we fear a risk, but instead, that we fear risking making a mistake, getting life wrong, failing, or finding ourselves heading in the wrong direction.
At some time in our lives, all of us feel some hesitancy toward embracing a new identity or accepting a new challenge, especially if there is uncertainty as to whether we will survive the change or navigate it with success. After all, no one wants to fail.
Resisting change is like resisting the air we breathe. Like the air, change is necessary, and whatever stress change causes must be remembered for what it is – just a temporary condition.