By Dwight Bain
Major change is almost impossible to manage alone, that’s why it is wise to seek guidance during times of massive change. Taking the right action quickly can prevent a stressful situation from getting worse and in fact may turn into unexpected success. I’ve had the chance to come alongside thousands of people over the last 30 years to coach them through major life transitions in their personal and professional life and have learned something new about change every day. Remember, since resolutions don’t work this is about changing your mind set on priorities. If you try to change everything, you will end up changing nothing. Are you ready to really experience positive change? Then read on!
While every difficult situation was complex in different ways, I discovered some common elements of a remarkable, although often, hidden source of energy that only became available during times of massive change. When used, this secret power gave these leaders the ability to achieve results instead of experiencing regrets while facing unbelievable levels of stress and pressure. My greatest joy was to coach them from pressure and problems to move forward with boldness by facing the changes necessary to gain personal strength and confidence.
Start by identifying the areas of life that need to change. Use this scale from my book “Destination Success” as a guide to get you started toward identifying the areas of life that need to improve.
Bain’s LIFE SUCCESS SCALE
Now let’s get honest! Take an intense look at your life, and score yourself using the following scale from 1-10 to evaluate how successful you believe you are in the major areas of life.
1= Panic 6= High Moderate
2= Extremely Weak 7= Low Strength
3= Weak 8= Strength
4= Low Moderate 9= High Strength
5= Moderate 10= Peak
Career & Professional-
Time & Schedule-
Learning & Personal Growth-
Recreation & Fun-
SUCCESS IN LIFE SCALE SCORE =
10-25 = CRISIS LIVING LEVEL 25-50 = UNHEALTHY LIVING LEVEL
50-75 = HEALTHY LIVING LEVEL 75-100 = OPTIMAL LIVING LEVEL
Every change brings a chance to self-improve and develop in countless ways, that’s why I’m sharing these insights with you now. I want you to benefit from the hidden power of change in your life every single day. As you read these insights, think about your own situation and the changes you are facing right now, as well as the changes you need to make over the next few months in order to achieve greater success.
Plan on using a highlighter to underline or circle the insights that reveal a part of you that is sick of feeling stuck in the same old pattern and is ready for a new perspective on change. Then take those highlighted concepts and begin to reshape them into action steps that you can use for guidance and motivation in your own journey of harnessing the hidden power of change.
- Change is common. Taking positive action about it is rare.
- Change is the most common element in life, just like the atom, which is the most common element in the universe. It’s everywhere and in everything but only a few studied it to understand how to harness the power of splitting an atom to develop massive amounts of energy- the energy of the universe itself! This common element had within it the power to develop – or – destroy the world. It’s the same for you and me, since the way that we deal with change will make our world a better place or lead to destroying it.
- Every little change makes big change possible. That’s why you have to do little things differently every day to see big things change over time.
- Everyone is moving forward but not everyone is on the same track. That’s why some people always look busy but never seem to accomplish much.
- Since change is the most common factor in life why do so many people fear it? They realize that they can’t completely control it so they completely give up. When you learn to manage change instead of avoid it, you regain control of yourself and then have the power to change the situation.
- Change is the most basic element of life however; it is so common that it is often overlooked. That’s why most people dismiss change as another misery in life to manage around. Leaders who learn to boldly confront change and take steps to master it find amazing focus and meaning.
- Change creates energy. It can either “psych you up” with heightened motivation to take action, or “psych you out” with fear and anxiety. Leaders maximize this hidden power of change to gain strength in difficult times.
- When a leader awakens to see how fast change actually moves, they gain the ability to zoom past others like they were asleep. At first this is exciting and fun to have the ability to move so fast; then it becomes increasingly frustrating. Because the goal of a leader is to use the power of change to wake others up instead of just selfishly using that power to manipulate others.
- Crisis reveals who you are- what you do about the crisis reveals who you will be.
- Comfort doesn’t bring change, comfort brings complacency. Only two things bring about radical and dynamic change- crisis and choice. One requires courage to boldly face issues and the other requires confidence to take bold action.
- Life is changing at lightning speed. Change with it at lightning speed and you will find amazing success; wait for it and you’ll be left in the dust of those who took a chance and moved to a new level of success.
- Leaders who say, “let’s wait and see” are really saying, “I’m too weak to express my opinion,” since “wait and see” usually means “wait and sink.”
- Systems are the key to success or failure in life; change the system- and you change your life!
- Big change creates a chance to build big confidence from taking bold action; instead of just building more complacency by choosing avoidance.
- Change is the only method you can use to cash a reality check.
- Understanding change is the key to building a good life- mastering change is the key to building a great legacy.
- How well you respond to change is the best indicator of how successfully you will live.
- If everything is changing, then you have a tremendous advantage if you are changing with it, since the gap between the changers and non-changers is growing every minute.
- People who master change will always be in demand as leaders, because as they grow stronger, people around them who haven’t changed will need their guidance more than ever. This gap between the ‘have’s’ and the ‘have not’s will grow dramatically in the future.
- Since everything is changing faster than ever, how come everyone isn’t changing faster than ever to keep up?
- Change forces you to make quick choices; so figure out now what you believe is right in order to make the right choice when it happens. You can’t wait on this, so do it now.
- Fast and furious, slow and steady or ignorance and bliss are all ways to manage change. Since the way you manage change is the way you manage your life, if you want to figure out how successful someone will be in the future, just watch how they deal with change today.
- Excuses are ways to avoid taking responsibility-which leads to criticism of others; reasons are ways to accept responsibility and lead to changing yourself instead of trying to change others.
- We build our future one day at a time by how wisely we manage the change happening around us today.
- Fame doesn’t equal fortune, which is why so many celebrities end up broke. They banked their futures on the myth that popularity brings profits instead of reinventing themselves through the process of continual self-improvement and change.
- Some people would rather keep the people in their life under control by never risking a change, than to push forward and hear those same people boldly cheer for them as they take the risk to move forward toward achieving a positive difference.
- You control change by the way you control your choices. You have the power to break the patterns that have held you back, and that power is wrapped up in one word, “choice.”
- Everything in life is changing quickly so everyone in life has to be changing fast to keep up, or risk being run over and left behind. Few will change fast, and those few will be the leaders.
- Change can lead to a crisis, which is stressful; or to a choice, which is also stressful; and staying the same creates the highest levels of stress! When you risk taking control of the changes around you, stress goes down as your strength and confidence goes up. Good trade.
- Most people run from change, leaders run toward it. They know that the courage required to run toward change is the down payment for the success they will experience on the other side of it.
- The difference between a challenge or crisis is based on your perspective of the problem, the resources available to you and most importantly how well you respond to change.
- The old saying “only the strong survive” is true- and real strength comes from facing the crisis instead of figuring out who to blame.
- Change reveals your weak spots that needed attention anyway; you just weren’t aware of it. This is the greatest secret of change- pressure points the way to personal growth.
- The size of the change shows the size of the problem that you have to deal with and the size of the team needed to manage it. Big change can’t be mastered by one person; and was never designed to be handled alone. That’s why you have to ask for help when things are changing rapidly instead of slipping into silence.
- An unexpected change feels like an explosion inside-it’s stressful, scary and stretches you in ways you didn’t anticipate. The end result of this process is strength as you stick with it.
- Life is about change and change is stressful. How you deal with the stress will make you better or it will continue to build until you have to deal with it anyway. There is no strength without overcoming significant amounts of stress.
- Mr. Goodwrench is right-you gotta pay. Paying now is difficult, waiting to pay later is usually disastrous because the price is always much greater. Paying now is the only way to successfully manage change.
- Surrender is the key to solve the anxiety of change, so learn to flow with change instead of fleeing from it or trying to fight it. Change your mind set about this process and you will just about eliminate worry and anxiety from your life.
- Since you cannot grow without changing- learn to master the change process early in life in order to achieve early success.
- The process of life is changing incredibly fast, and that’s stressful, but if you press through the stress, you will always gain strength and success.
- Move from frustration to fulfillment by changing your mindset about making the right choice in a difficult situation.
- Life is about change and change is stressful, as you press through the stress you will become strong.
- Every change involves a risk and the greater the change, the greater the risk. But great rewards require bold action, so take the risk to change and you will be boldly rewarded.
- Making a positive change in your life today is going to be painful, but the long term payoff is powerful.
- Avoiding change doesn’t make it go away, it makes it grow bigger and you still have to deal with it, so tackle it now, while it’s small enough to manage.
- Be direct with change and you will take charge of your life.
- Change often forces you to face the things that you probably needed to face anyway.
- Change will test you. How you react to the change determines if you pass to go to the next level of growth, which will require more change!
- Every change involves a choice-face it and grow-or avoid it and get stuck. This is your chance to choke up or buck up!
- Change is hard, but not changing is always harder.
- If you face change you have a chance of making a difference. If you don’t face it you never will, and will likely let life pass you by.
- You can’t control change, but you can control your reaction to it.
- Change involves the cycle of fighting for control, feeling like you are losing control, surrendering control and making the choice to allow God full control your life.
- Change cycle: Life = change = stress = strength = success; so as you master stress the successes come faster and more frequently.
- Every change tests what you believe. If you wiggle out of facing the test today, it just comes back bigger next time so face the change, take the test and show the world what you believe.
- When change happens you have a choice- manage it and grow stronger, or avoid it and grow weaker.
- Reacting to change wisely improves every part of your life-reacting foolishly destroys your life. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer all based on what they do with change.
- Change is temporary and usually comes from unexpected circumstances. Confidence is lasting and usually comes from strategically planned choices.
- Crisis forces change which is good for everyone but never really appreciated by anyone.
- Changing your spouse is impossible-changing your situation is possible and changing yourself gives you the strength to say “I’m-possible”. Everything is different when you make the decision to change.
- When you stop spending your energy trying to change the people in your life who don’t want to change, you discover a hidden source of power for personal change in your own life.
- Stop trying to change! Decide to either do it or not do it, but quit telling yourself and others that you are trying. When you’re trying-you’re lying.
- Some people spend all their time trying to change others because they fear changing themselves. However, when you overcome that fear and change yourself it forces the people around you to change as well.
- When you make a dramatic change, it forces the people around you to make a dramatic change as well. They have to change along with you, or they must leave- either way the relationship is never the same.
- Unexpected change will happen- so get ready now to manage it when it comes; which will always be sooner than later.
- You can try to escape change or you can equip and get ready to face it, either way you have to make a choice about dealing with change.
- Changing yourself is hard work, because you have to make right choices in the face of possible rejection and failure. Not changing yourself only brings a greater chance for even greater rejection and failure.
- Change what you can, (like exercising to lose weight), instead of what you can’t (like trying to stretch yourself taller to hide the weight by shifting it around or buying magic ‘fat burner’ pills). That’s why you can grow stronger with the power of personal change in spite of any obstacle or setback. Remember- you always have options.
- When you make a bold choice to change, it brings an immediate sense of confidence, control & energy. The decision to change gives you a huge boost in mental power and strength to overcome obstacles.
- If you avoid making the choice to change, you get confusion which leads to chaos. When you take bold action and choose to change you get confidence which leads to success.
- Change yourself or change the system. People like to discuss or criticize the system, because it feels safer than taking the courage to risk something new and in the process change themselves.
- Control change now, or it will be controlling you later.
- When you avoid making a relationship change in order to avoid relationship conflict, you guarantee that there will be more conflict than you ever dreamed possible. Better to deal with the changes now on your terms and with your time frame, than let it build up into a power struggle full of conflict that always explodes when you least expect it.
- When someone brings the “worst” out of you in a relationship, let the experience challenge your weakest points to change. Don’t let their personality problems get in the way of your progress and growth. Grow before you go.
- If you want to experience dramatic change in your life it can only come from improving every day. There are no instant plans for maturity.
- The things you control, are the things that you can immediately change- if you have the courage to face them and take action!
- Most people know what needs to change in their life- they just lack the courage to boldly face it and do something about it.
- It’s easier live in fear than to find the courage of Todd Beamer who empowered a nation to change when he faced the 9/11 terrorists with the words “Let’s Roll”.
- Whoever said, “If present trends continue” didn’t understand change. That’s why you can’t look back at trends and accurately predict the future, it changes too fast. Learn from the past, study where you are today and get ready for the new trends ahead. As John Maxwell says, “Yesterday ended last night.”
- Trust is everything & everything builds trust or it builds distrust. That’s why every relationship is getting stronger or weaker every day based on the choices you make today. You always control your side of relationships, both personally and professionally. Change your side of the situation before you criticize the other side; that way your integrity and self-respect continues to grow strong, in spite of the difficulty or problems.
- Trust takes a long time to build, a short time to lose, and then a long time to build. So whichever way you turn, you have to be building trust.
- Facing change has always been the fastest way to achieve greatness in life. That’s why we remember the names of Edison, Ford, Carnegie or Disney instead of equally talented people living during the same era who were afraid to take the chance to make a change.
- This is your time to change!
So, what insights have you gained from this quick study of the subject of change, and more importantly, what are you going to do about it …today? Now?
I’ve studied what people say when they are facing the end of their life, and noticed that they find their greatest satisfaction from areas they took the positive action to change. Relationships that grew strong, houses or businesses they built, financial security they achieved and then wisely invested, health and happiness from doing something different to leave a positive legacy. Those were the things that people smiled about as they faced eighty years’ worth of life.
What about you? Have you thought about the value of making positive changes over a lifetime? If you begin today to move forward and face your problems with the hidden power of change, it will get you off the road of complacency and comfort and move you toward a better life. A life that will be scary at first, but leads to counting blessings instead of problems because you had enough courage to risk moving forward to face and deal with change; instead of staying stuck and being destroyed by it.
I challenge you to begin that process today as if your life depended on it, because it does! Real life is lost when you try to avoid dealing with change, that’s why some people have the same problems at fifty-five that they did at twenty-five. They just got older on the outside instead of growing up on the inside. When they say they have had a problem for ‘their whole life’ it’s a lie! Life isn’t over yet, so you can’t have a problem every day of life- unless you are dead!
This is your time to break away from the crowd, take a risk and move toward change. Even taking one step is a change from the way you used to live, so take it! Take it and know that when you do, the right people will come along side you to help; after you make the first move toward change- never before. You see, God is always on time with the people, ideas, capital or whatever resource you need to change, but He always waits on us to take the first step. That may explain why Jesus would always ask the sick people he was about to heal one simple question. “What would you have me to do for you?” He asked before He healed.
Now it’s your turn to experience the supernatural power of change. What do you want to change? What prayer do you want answered so badly that you can taste it? What area of life is about to explode with growth and potential in your life? There is a tremendous power in change but it waits on you.
Success in your life is always waiting on you and you alone. Are you ready? I believe this is your time, that’s why you have read this far as you considered making a positive change in your own life. However, there is no power in a coach telling you to change, because the power is in your movement and your action. Change is waiting on you, because when you believe enough to take the first step, the power will grow inside of you to take the next one. Change grows with every positive action you take, as does your personal power.
Here’s a warning for you though. It will be a lot harder than you think when you begin to honestly face the weaknesses that are crying out for change in your life, both personally and professionally. Not only will it be painful to do this, but you can’t do it alone so you will need to take action to involve other healthy people . Go find a coach, counselor, mentor, book, tape, CD, seminar, or even a fellow struggler who is motivated enough to risk making a change and ask them to come alongside you in the journey of changing instead of complaining.
Here’s another warning! Know that some will come against you to criticize your progress, because your growth makes them feel uncomfortable and it exposes the weaknesses in their life that they need to take action on. They may attack you, your motives, your character, and especially your dreams of a better life. The bigger the change you make, the more they may come against you! Don’t stop my friend, Press on anyway.
Sadly, this will especially be true for those who are the closest to you. Be ready for their attacks, since it’s not really about you, it’s about the discomfort they feel about making change in their life. Don’t slow down- don’t stop…just keep growing and changing and pray for them to do the same, since the momentum from your positive growth might challenge them to do the same. God wants them to change too, that’s why He sent you to lead the way. So don’t wait on them, just keep growing every day as you draw from the hidden power of change.
As you take this positive action in your life, be prepared for one more surprising thing. Everyone around you, including total strangers, will begin to praise you in amazement because of how quickly and powerfully your life has become one of strength and significance. Everyone will be surprised at your progress except God, who designed you for greatness a long time ago. It was inside you the whole time! Your difficult life experiences opened up your mind to the new possibilities that are only available from the hidden power of change.
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About the author- Dwight Bain is dedicated to helping people achieve greater results. He is a Nationally Certified Counselor, Certified Life Coach and Family Law Mediator in practice since 1984 with a primary focus on solving crisis events and managing major change. He partners with the media and organizations to make a positive difference in our culture. Access more counseling and coaching resources designed to save you time by solving stressful situations by visiting his counseling blog with over 500 complimentary articles and special reports atwww.LifeWorksGroup.org