On the journey of life, resistance to change can exposes itself in many ways, ranging from foot-dragging, to sabotage, to even outright rebellion. Studying universal sources of resistance gives us the ability to see when we may be resistant to change ourselves. Here are several warning signs to watch out for:

• Excessive Uncertainty.

To some, change can feel like walking off a cliff blindfolded. This anxiety can cause us to push back from anything we view as “change.” We all naturally seek self preservation and safety, so it is common for people to choose to remain in misery to avoid the uncertainty of change. As the saying goes, “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t.”

• Everything seems different.

Change naturally brings new things into our lives. But we are creatures of habit. Since we are often lulled into daily routines, change often jolts us into consciousness, often in uncomfortable ways. We can resist change if it shines a spotlight on things we’d rather have stay the same.

• Loss of face.

Change is a departure from the past. We can perceive change as admitting that we have done something wrong that requires a change. If we buy into that thought process, we often resist change to save our ego and perceived reputation.

• Concerns about competence.

If changes mean that our current skills become obsolete, we often resist change so that we don’t have to learn new skill sets. If things would only stay the same, we would not have to feel like we are not up to the new task.

• More work.

Change is indeed more work. Those closest to change are often overloaded and resist it in an effort to reduce the load.

• Past resentment.

The ghosts of the past are always lying in wait to haunt us. Old wounds can be reopened in times of change.

• Ripple effects.

Change can create ripples and affect others around you. These ripples can lead to disruptions in routines, workflow, and even in the way we think.


* Have you found yourself resisting change lately? If so, do you see things like these cropping up within you? How have you dealt with them?

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