How Do You Embrace Change?

When you’re married to the military and relocate as much as I have (I lost count after twenty moves) you learn to deal with change. My husband can call me at a moments notice and ask, “Hey, ya wanna move to Zimbabwe?” and I’ll let loose with a whoop of excitement. I love to experience new things, and I’m a seasoned traveler.

Like me, I always expected my military friends to move, because it comes with the territory. I completely understand that they are here today, gone tomorrow. But as a rule, most civilians don’t just rip up their roots and leave for new adventures. That’s my role, after all.

You can imagine my disbelief when an acquaintance-who-could-have-been-a-great-friend announced today that she was moving. I was so looking forward to building this particular friendship, it never dawned on me that I might not get the chance. My reaction to her news took me completely by surprise: I cried. In spite of the fact that I’ve only known her for a couple of months, the reality that “moving happens” in the civilian world hit me hard. I was thankful for my ever-present sunglasses, because they hid the tears that swam in my eyes.

I don’t know if I was crying because she is moving, or because I had to face a change that I did not initiate. Maybe it was a bit of both. But I did what I always do when I need to mull something over – I dove into the internet in an effort to understand my complicated emotions.

What I found was a phenomenal article written by business Guru Tom Mendoza, who observed that “Most people are averse to change. They like to keep things the way they are; they like to stay in their comfort zone.”

I’m sure they (like me today) simply want to bury their heads in the sand and pretend change isn’t happening. Unfortunately, as I found out, change finds it way into our lives whether we want it or not. And when it does we have to face it.

How we face it is critical. Mendoza explains, “More than any other, one single attribute separates people in the workplace. That’s attitude. Attitude is critical when it comes to embracing change.”

I think this theory is demonstrated well in the following image, and today I can completely relate to the caterpillar.

The butterflies among us probably don’t need any advice on how to handle change.

But the caterpillars in the crowd need to head over to Forbes’ site and discover 6 Powerful Ways to Embrace Change.

Are you a butterfly, or a caterpillar?

ostrich image compliments; caterpillar image by Mike Waters,