Summer is quickly coming to a close and we will face yet another transition in our routine, mood and focus. In view of this, I was doing some research on how we are impacted by change and I came across an article by David F.K. Mpanga called, “Embrace change: It is the only constant in life.” The title caught my attention because I am a firm believer that change is continually occurring with every minute of our existence and it’s how we welcome and adapt to change that will make it a positive experience, or not.
In his article, Mpanga shares some tips about change from some significant people in history. I thought they were well said an worth sharing. Here they are…..
The first tip is from General Colin Powell, “Don’t let your ego get too close to your position, so that if your position gets shot down, your ego doesn’t go with it.” We all have to take positions on all manner of issues big and small. One has to find a way of ensuring that whatever position you take on any issue does not come to define who you are. Maintain a healthy multifaceted identity and do not become a single dimensional caricature. You can be a consummate professional, an active community member, support a political party, a sports fan, a parent and several other things. Do not tie your whole being to things that are bound to change.
The second tip comes from the Gospel of Saint Luke 12:2-3 (New International Version): “But there is nothing covered up that will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known. Accordingly, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in the inner rooms will be proclaimed upon the housetops.” If you do not want it proclaimed from the rooftops, do not whisper it to a man who may be secretly recording your conversation and not taking good care of the tapes.
The third tip is to avoid extremes. Always be moderate in your views, actions and pronouncements. As General Dwight Eisenhower said “Extremes to the right and to the left of any political dispute are always wrong.” At the end of the day, we all really want the same things for ourselves and our children. The only disagreements that we have are about how these noble objectives are to be achieved and by whom the task of achieving them is best executed. So instead of adopting extreme positions, always seek the middle inclusive ground.
Lastly, read the times and position yourself, not just to surf the wave of change but rather to “be the change that you want to see in the world”, as Mahatma Ghandi once said. Get up, get out and do something.