Paradoxical Theory of Change

A tool used to describe change is often referred to as the “change curve”. In psychology this is sometimes referred to as the Kubler-Ross cycle, after the psychiatrist who studied death, dying and grief. She came up with this depiction to illustrate how people adapt to loss. It’s widely used among many disciples to help people understand that there is a process of adapting, and growing through a big change. This curve is essentially, the process of living life. Any experience in life, can transpose this process to it – be it an organizational change, a change in relationships, an addition to a family, a new team member, the loss of a loved one, an injury. This process helps us understand how we adapt through something new.

How do we go through this process? Most people struggle going through the process. Often people’s reactions to change aren’t to the change itself, but the process of change. We resist, we deny, we get stuck in emotion. However, the only way out, is through. This is what is often referred to as the “paradoxical theory of change”.

Change occurs when one becomes what s/he is, not when s/he tries to become what s/he is not.

Change does not take place through a coercive attempt by the individual or by another person to change them, but it takes place if one takes the time and effort to be what they are – to be fully invested in their current position. In this way change occurs by surrender. Again the paradox is that change doesn’t occur by “trying”, coercion, or persuasion, or by insight, interpretation or any other active means.  Rather, change can occur when you abandon, at least for the moment, what you would like to become and attempts to be what you are. The premise is that one must stand in one place in order to have firm footing to move and that it is difficult or impossible to move without that footing.

Resilience is…

building capacity to stay with the process of change; a skill you have to practice, and in every moment of change you are called to practice.

#Corona #covid19 #Quarantine How do you cope? Paradoxically…

How do you deal with quarantine for another 3, 4, 5, 6 weeks? Perspective. You may want to be productive and work, school your children: take action to feel in control. This is what we have all been taught in our world. Yet, this time calls for building some different muscles. This situation calls for inaction, rest, peace, and not-doing. When we push the river where it doesn’t flow, we create resistance. The paradox is when we flow with what is, change naturally occurs.

Transformation amidst COVID19

Now more than ever, humans are being called to a state of transformation. Greatness comes from deliberate discomfort when we breathe through the process of change. Whether you’re a professional working from home, laid off and looking for work, or a stay at home parent, or all three; this time is calling all humans to move forward in new ways.

The definition of insanity is doing the same things you’ve always done, expecting different results. However, pausing to ask yourself these key questions can alter your perceptions, emotions, and experience:

What am I learning from this experience?

What are my beliefs that are making this more challenging?

How will this experience lead me to greater strength?