Using Limits During Times of Accelerated Change
There will always be ups and downs in life and in training because we are human beings and not machines. In contrast to a machine, we have the ability to adapt to stress and improve, but there are always limits to this.
The concepts of change management are found in so many places. One that really caught my attention recently was hidden in an article about fitness.
It actually makes a lot of sense when you think about it. Fitness involves an incredible amount of preparation and training. It's also just as much (if not more) a mental exercise than a physical one.
This particular piece was focused on stalls, providing tips on what to do when forward momentum is stunted or seems to have stopped altogether.
But what I loved the most about the article was its heightened focus on giving the reader one simple yet extremely pertinent message: the powerful reminder to not be so hard on yourself.
"Eventually, progress always slows, meaning more progress takes more work and more time. This also means more fluctuations along the way, and you must mentally prepare yourself for this. Training shares many features of other pursuits in life: it has its slow times, ups and downs, and the really fun moments when everything is progressing like wildfire."
Change management focuses a lot on the emotional side of the change curve. From frustration and anger, to excitement and acceptance, we all experience a range of emotions during any kind of transition. This doesn't make us weak. It makes us human.
Where leaders of organizations have an incredible opportunity can also be found in the acceptance part of the change curve: precisely, through the recognition that individuals, as well as organizations, have limits.
Much like a speed bump is designed to intentionally slow cars down in a high consequence area, people assisting with projects related to major change have the chance to act as such. Setting intentional limits, or being the "speed bump" along the journey, is not the opposite of progress. Rather, these actions can in and of itself be the improvement as it may help everyone reach the destination more efficiently.
This year has been an undeniable year of change and uncertainty. It's absolutely imperative that we all look at installing our own speed bumps and creating our own speed limits. The time is always right to take care of yourself.
Stay safe, MM