Growing up, we all experienced our clothes not fitting anymore because we were growing. Our favorite gym shoes no longer fit. The shirt or pants we liked were now gone from our lives. Every year our classrooms changed. Our teachers changed. The subjects we were studying changed.
But then we grow up. Quickly we fall into our routines and habits. We get lazy and acquire a comfort in the daily, common schedule of our lives. At a time when our physical growth stops, quickly our personal growth subsides as well. Bills and schedules replace the endless time we had when we were young to play and dream.
What creeps into our lives becomes this great fear of change. It stops us from becoming who we can be. It stops us from making better choices because it is much more familiar to us to make the same choices rather than ones that we have never picked before.
It feels strange when a new boss arrives and the priorities change. We defiantly push back when the ideas we now hear are different than what we are used to in our familiar setting. Diets are hard because they require us to change the way we eat and push us to exercise when it is not common for us to do in our daily lives.
Self help books can talk all they want about personal growth and the need to make better choices. But our fear of change always holds us back. Change never feels comfortable nor was it meant to be. Change is not always safe and does carry risk.
That is why diversity in our lives becomes so critical. Where there is diversity, change feels more comfortable as we are immersed in different points of view and possibilities daily. Where there is diversity, change doesn’t feel as risky.
It’s when we are around the same people and routines every day does the risk of change become magnified. Realizing the closed room our life mirrors, when there is a lack of diversity, is very hard to do. We are amongst friends and family so why could they be so limiting?
Friends and family are about love and connection. They usually aren’t about change and personal growth. It’s the outside world and our interactions with it that give us the opportunity to both experience diversity and endure the struggles that are inherent when we seek meaningful change in our lives for personal growth.
All of us aspire to a better life (whatever our definition of it is). It rarely occurs where we are today but requires us overcoming the fear of change to risk finding it. Even though we may struggle, fall down and be asked to endure along the way.
Life takes on a whole new, deeper, dimension when we give ourselves the chance to experience this. Making change our friend and realizing that fear resides only in our mind and must be overcome to grow, evolve, and prosper.