This past Friday, I had the privilege of being in New York City to hear Seth Godin. Seth put this event on himself as part of the promotion of his new book “Linchpin”. I will write a full review of the book after I have read it. If it is even half as good as Seth’s presentation, it will be excellent.
Seth started out with a statement. “The result of change is a lot of pain or a lot of opportunity.” He went on and gave the best and clearest discourse on what this country is going through right now as everything from the economy to business to culture are making a dramatic shift. I may post more on what he said later.
For now, let’s just look at that statement that was part of his opening. “The result of change is a lot of pain or a lot of opportunity.” What determines the difference between the pain and the opportunity? Is it luck? Is it the circumstances of the change? Maybe it is the way leaders enact change. Possibly it is more about the timing of the change. What is the key factor? I think we could all agree that we would rather have the opportunity then the pain. We ALL can.
It is a simple matter of choice. How we choose to respond and deal with the change is what makes all the difference. There may, and probably will, be pain involved, but the opportunity can outweigh the pain if we choose that path. Change is guaranteed. There is no stopping it. We can dig our heels in and refuse, we can even deny it. It is happening and it will continue to happen. We might as well find the opportunities and run with them. In fact, we must.
We’ve heard it said, “Your attitude determines your altitude.” There are many other motivational sayings that fit with that. It’s true. It’s vital. Our attitude in every circumstance matters. I was reminded this morning as I thought through this that I didn’t always handle things well. I had a bad temper and wanted things my way. My attitude was terrible. When something went wrong, I blew up and overreacted. I have since learned the futility and lunacy of all of that. It damaged my testimony. It disrupted my relationships. It cost me opportunities. Everything that happens in life is change of some form. The choices we make in those moments matter and determine the outcome.
You are changing. Your life is changing. So is mine. Everyday. However success is defined in the situation, it can only be achieved by choosing to respond to the change as an opportunity.
What lessons have you learned about change?