This happened when I was presenting a book synopsis to a group of about 100 health care professionals. In the midst of this presentation, I asked a question that I have asked many audiences:
“How many of you like change?”
Nearly every hand goes up. And, then, in the nicest tone of voice I can muster, I say: — “I don’t mean to offend you. But practically all of you are lying. The fact is, you really don’t like change – and neither do I.”
I am increasingly convinced of this. Oh, we like and praise and honor and revere those folks and companies that bring about change that we have accepted as good. We fall in love with successful change – after the fact!
But, to actually be the one to have to change, especially “first,” especially when such change disrupts our routine or preferences? We don’t like this kind of change. We want others to like change. But we like doing things our way, the way we have grown oh so comfortable with.
Let’s take something as simple as a web site re-design. I hate it when I have learned the layout of a news or shopping website or blog, and then they change it on me. And that’s how I feel, by the way –“Why did they have to do this to me?”
Now, I know that such change is good, “required” to stay competitive, but I don’t like to have to learn the new layout. I was happy just the way it was before, thank you very much!
And, by the way, I wish I was not like this. I wish I saw a new web site design, and thought “Oh goody – I can’t wait to try this out, and learn the new features of this site.” I wish I was that way – but, I’m not.
So, I resonate with this terrific article: Inside the Box: People don’t actually like creativity by Jessica Olien.
From her article:
We are taught that our own creativity will be celebrated as well, and that if we have good ideas, we will succeed.
It’s all a lie. This is the thing about creativity that is rarely acknowledged: Most people don’t actually like it. Studies confirm what many creative people have suspected all along: People are biased against creative thinking, despite all of their insistence otherwise.
Most people agree that what distinguishes those who become famously creative is their resilience. While creativity at times is very rewarding, it is not about happiness.
To live creatively is a choice. You must make a commitment to your own mind and the possibility that you will not be accepted. You have to let go of satisfying people, often even yourself. (emphasis added).
So, here’s your innovation/change/creativity lesson of the day. It has to start with you.
Professional Speaker & Writer
Co-founder, First Friday Book Synopsis