This is a very complex and interesting question for me and I’m really looking forward to finding out my thoughts on this by writing this article. Firstly, it is important to acknowledge that most people fear change. They fear losing their jobs, lack of money, war, ill-health, in fact a whole heap of things that in themselves imply a change of state – from happiness (or in most cases comfort) to unhappiness.
Indeed is this all it is? People fear change because they associate it with a change from good to bad or from bad to worse? Lets examine some situations:
Fearing change at work: Why? Because they think that their job is already hard and change has previously meant more workload or new systems to learn.
Fearing change in relationships: Why? Because people are frightened to be on their own, or lose a partner or family member or friend.
There seems to be a pattern emerging here… Are people simply focusing on the bad stuff and not any of the good that may come from change? If this is the case, why?
One guess, and it is a guess, would be that we are constantly bombarded from an early age with negative messages about change. We are encouraged to focus on all the bad things that may happen and certainly from our news and media, how things are not as good as they used to be. In fact if we looked at the evidence, there is more money, better lifestyle, more opportunity and better health and health care than there ever has been. So really what is there to fear?
I’m remembering the book, Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, by Susan Jeffers, in which she states that the real fear is the fear of not being able to handle it. This ties in very nicely with change – if change happens, we are automatically or instinctively frightened that we will not be able to handle it.
So people fear change, because they focus on the possible negative impacts on their happiness and lives and they do not know if they will be able to handle it. I’d be really interested to hear your thoughts on this, click below on the comments link and leave a message.