Before we start, I want to congratulate for all that you have done to move up the corporate ladder, even if all of it is in preparing your mind so far. So good work! Now let’s keep going because today’s topic is a game changer. It’s about pushing through the inevitable resistance that you are going to face when you make changes, small or big.
First Identify Your Resistance to Change
Resistance is normal, and everyone goes through some level of resistance when making the crucial changes that we talk about here but if you are not equipped to deal with this resistance, you won’t move up the corporate ladder very much at all.
Easy Question: What do getting out of a bad job, leaving a bad marriage, and abandoning a really bad friendship all have in common?
That’s right: they all require the thing we dread to do as human beings: Change. They require a change in perspective. A change in mindset. A change in thinking.
As humans, our first reaction is to resist change, because we fear change. No matter how bad the status quo may get – say, a miserable job, a terrible boss, a lose-lose situation at work – the fear of the unknown is more than enough to keep us at bay and frozen in place. We resist to take action even if that unknown is the best thing that could happen to us.
In my career, resistance froze me in place for far too long at my miserable job as a customer support engineer and I have a feeling that if you are reading this too, it may be holding you back too, often without your being aware of it.
So the first lesson is to identify resistance to change. If you are moving along swimmingly with the content of this blog, and implementing the lessons withing left and right without any problem, you are the exception and I’m very glad for you.
But if you are feeling some resistance, then keep reading because before I share any more thoughts about moving up the corporate ladder – imagine getting that promotion and big fat raise – we need to push through the resistance first.
The Right Change to Move Up the Corporate Ladder
First, let’s analyze change so we can understand it better.
We are creatures of routine, like it or not. Our nature believes in having routine and structure. When change comes along, we go into protection mode and want to keep our routine nice and safe. And unfortunately, we don’t identify too well between good change and bad change.
Not all change is created equal.
Bad change: Going from doing well to doing poorly financially-speaking.
Good change: Going from a sedentary lifestyle to waking up your body by adding a strict exercise and healthy eating program into your life.
Really bad change: Going from safe smart driving to fast and obnoxious driving just to be “hip” and “cool” where you are only being a fool.
Really good change: Going from feeling sorry for yourself to believing that you are unique and can offer plenty to the world, with all your strengths and talents, thank you very much!
So you see, not all change is created equal, and some change can be so good for you. But how do you make yourself see this?
The easiest way is to have a positive motto for yourself, “Hey, I see a change coming at work. Neat! This could be the best thing!” Rather than resorting to resistance and becoming defensive, repeat the motto over and over. Then you can clear your mind to examine the change and decide with some logic whether it actually is a good or bad change.
If you want to take this one step further, experiment with paradigm shifts.
This is where you change the angle from which you look at all change. Your assumptions and preconceived notions about it all come from that angle. So decide what your position will be. You can choose to receive all change as good, and examine it later, as we did in the above example.
Paradigm shifts are very powerful. You can push through any resistance with the right paradigm shift because you are being decisive – rather than reactive – to change, so resistance becomes very weak. You are in charge. This is also a characteristic trait that your management will find attractive, as you will see in future lessons.
So that’s it for today’s strategy. I leave you with one parting question:
What would happen if you practiced the paradigm shift for the next 3 changes that come your way at work? Find a different angle to look at them and document the results.
So practice the concepts in this lesson. Once you put them to use, you’ll be shocked with the results you can get as you move up the corporate ladder.