Why is it difficult to change?

Sometimes myself and my friends have great discussions on email. It dies out after few days. There has been occasions when I have tried unsuccessfully to dig out old mails. This time I made it a blog post so we share and get to keep it. Some parts have been removed to keep privacy.

From: Thejesh G. N.
Because you compare worst case of change to best case of status quo. Unfair right?


From: Pramitha

yeah, i have been thinking abt it in last few days and planning an article for my blog on CHANGE.
It gets difficult to accept the change whn u compare.

From: Sandeep.GL
Yes, for those who do not want to change
Because of the comparison before and after change

No, for those who want to change
Because they compare best case of change to worst case of status quo

People cant change until unless the comparison comes into picture
You want to change because you compare

Change is inevitable
Comparison is obvious

From: Mamatha, GN
It depends.
I feel if the drive to change is from outside (like the situation or the people around you) then one compares the situations to decide whether to change or not.
But if the drive is from within (for self excel) then comparison doesn’t matter much. Only self satisfaction matters and there is no limit for it.

From: Pramitha
Sent: Tuesday, December 08, 2009 10:59 AM
u r rite madam…….
but it also depends on what you compare and what you see in the change.

From: Sandeep.GL
Ultimately you have to compare if you want to change
It does not matter it is driven frm other or driven frm with in
For self excel also you need to compare your previous status and then only you can get better
So today you compare your status of yesterday’s if you feel better you continue. If you want to be better(Compare to previous day Status) you start the process of change..
That’s what Theja has asked the question people tend to compare before they undergo any change

From: Thejesh G. N.
Comparison is inevitable..when there is change..
But when comparing don’t compare best of today to worst of tomorrow, keep them at the same level or may be +ve.
That is what I meant, which I usually try to follow.

From: Manoj
Change is inevitable…I guess this holds good (note purely my perspective)…I have been through thick and thin of life for a year now…I lost my job..many unsuccessful attempts and I changed..I started doing whatever came my way…so for me change has been driven by circumstances…

From: Manjunath KA
What if there is a change due to the impact/consequences? There may be a behavioral change or change in the personality itself. With what do you compare then?

From: Sandeep.GL
How do you say there is a behavioral change or change in personality itself??…i mean how you decide that there is change??

From: Manjunath KA
1.What if you decide to change doing something for a promise? This is behavioral change and anybody will just adapt to keep the near and dear ones happy, without comparing to anything ,
2.What if something miserable happens to you and you have to take all the responsibilities of your family. Under these circumstances there will be a personality change whether you know it or not and yourself will come to know or someone else will highlight it . This also you don’t compare with anything
I agree change is inevitable but one needs to look at what type of change it is and this mainly depends on the source for change

From: Thejesh G. N.
Agree,as I just wrote in another mail.
Comparing is a difficult stuff,I would compare whether the change is for good or for badand you know the answer.
Again what is good or bad is relative, but try to be Objective without being scared of being judged. Not everyone can be objective.

From: Venkatesh, Vinay
This is too much brain job for me, My principles are simple.
1.S*** happens. Life is not fair. If you feel like complaining (and all of us do, no exceptions) do it till it feels good and then move on. It’s a natural healing mechanism.
2.If change is thrust upon you (this is typical at workplaces) concentrate on the parts you like and leave the rest to manage itself. The system will naturally change itself to fill the gaps. If you want to get aggressive about things, go ahead, but try to be level headed. Anger is another natural healing mechanism. It gives a purpose for your actions. At the end you will either end up at point 1 or be successful. And nobody complains about being successful. :)
3.You impose a change on yourself, typically bcos you are bored of same old stuff. Have enough energy and drive to see it through. Before you start, just re-check to see whether you are getting impulsive.

From: Pramitha
change is inevitable……. good or bad will not be in our hands in few situations. We got to learn to accept the change in positive way. Process of accepting the change will inculde the comparisons, explanations, examples, etc etc……

From: Thejesh G. N.
I am going to use this in a blog post.

What is the conclusion?
Change is inevitable, but change for good.

What do you think? Why are we so scared about change?

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8 Responses

  1. Prats says:

    I guess we are scared of change for the fear of getting worse not better .. And abt others, we are more scared coz we fear they might move away from us or will lose the existing bond after the change ! Its all about your fears and insecurities that stop you from changing .. A fear of new challenges/problems dsnt let u leave ur current job, fear of being ridiculed by ur frnds dsnt let u change ur habits and so on .. thats wen u r not sure where the change will lead u .. but if u r not changing from bad to good things, u r just being lazy and reckless with your life !

  2. Thejesh GN says:

    @Prats : Yes. Insecurities and scared of being judged/categorized plays a major part.

  3. Prasanna says:

    Change as a result of circumstances is understandable, since you have no other choice. But when it comes to the case of comparisons, even if you know that you will do better if you change some facets in ur life, you would still feel reluctant to move out of your comfort zone. It’s people who are willing to move out of the ‘zone’, who can accept change.

  4. nisha says:

    I suppose because we are like an onion, Thej. Like an onion, we have several layers and our core lies in the centre. We do not see our own core, nor others can see it easily and we are used to guarding it with several layers. The frayed uppermost layer faces the changing winds first (and perhaps that is why it gets frayed) but for the individial to change, the core must change. And the core would not change unless each layer is affected, changes and allows the changing winds to reach the core. That is is why change is not just hard but also takes time. But as the other comments suggest, external environment, compulsions make change an imperative so the outer layers may change faster and that would bring a change in the behaviour but for the beliefs to change the core has to be touched. Does this make any sense?

  5. Thejesh GN says:

    @nisha : Yes, It makes sense. And I agree the change takes time, specially if it is a significant change.

  6. Supriya says:

    Well, I think we are scared of change because it has a certain UNCERTAINTY element attached to it. Whenever we are unsure of the outcome, for any task we are scared. So people prefer to stay in their nutshell and comfort zone instead of spending the extra effort to venture into an uncertainty – unless they are pushed, or its mandatory, or by their sequential learning through years gather more probability of success than failure, the daring ones who dont care about results, or people who just want to try their luck at it.

    Also, the word CHANGE itself has been played around so much over the years that – even “no change” is considered as a CHANGE by itself :D Also when Change is good for one, may be bad for others and vice versa. So CHANGE or NO CHANGE, there is nothing good or bad – unless what we particularly attribute to it, and its all a perceptive phenomenon. I guess we need to just move ahead in life without worrying much about changes unless they are inevitable (when it requires thought), and try to minimise the BAD changes (changes more widely accepted as bad, and causing harm to a greater number of people than before)

  7. Dhanya says:

    First of all, I am really surprised (in a nice way of course) that you guys go through such serious conversations through mail! Interesting…

    Getting out of one’s comfort zone is always a lil uncomfy at first — which is the major reason why we’re scared of change. We don’t want to get out of that comfort zone and tread into an unknown land coz what resides there is uncertain and maybe even unreliable. Unreliability is a scary thing isn’t it ?

  8. Thejesh GN says:

    @Dhanya : Yes, In fact we have had a very deep discussions about many subjects in past. If I digg my old mails I can make many more blog posts like this :)
    I am sure uncertainty is one of the biggest factor. But I think that shouldn’t stop one from changing for good. Right?

    @Supriya : We are so stuck, we feel no change as the change :)

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