Change is difficult. There, I said it. I could promise something else so that you’ll pay me a lot of money to come in and coach you or help your organization, but that would be dishonest.
I’m in the midst of a year of a change, and it is HARD. Like a rubber band, I stretch and stretch but always with the desire to pop back to a comfort zone.
So, how do you stretch until popping back is not an option? You foster a tribe that both supports and inspires you.
Human beings are pack animals, and as such, we tend to travel through life surrounded by a small group of people. In the book “Grouped” by Paul Adams, the author reports that research shows we are all connected through an average of 6.6 people.
Beyond this small, immediate tribe, we also have more informal tribes at work. These are the people with whom we spend most of our conversational time.
To be able to truly change, we sometimes must edit our tribe. Personal change or change at work is difficult enough when you have support, but successful change can be totally altered if your “tribe” discourages it.
Many an alcoholic has found that when they quit it was their immediate tribe that tried to push them off that wagon. They all had their role in the alcoholic’s dance, and without the “bad guy” how could they be the “good guy”? So, many recovering alcoholics had to find a few new tribal members in their AA group.
I have had to let go a couple of my informal tribal members during this journey of change. I realized that they were in my tribe for all the wrong reasons.
What about you? Are the people around you supporting your change initiative? Or are they trying to drag you back to the familiar and push you off that change wagon?
Look around and make sure you know the answers to those questions, because change is difficult, and delicate, and dynamically magnificent when completed. Make sure you have the tribe that will keep you moving forward.