93: Change: How To Consistently Make Positive Change
Whether you believe it or not, it is a fact of life that everything eventually changes. How it changes, though, is up to you. Ultimately, what everyone wants is consistent and positive changes in their lives. Host, Thane Marcus Ringler, shares with us his different takes and insights on having to go through changes in one’s life. He discusses quotes from great leaders that serve as an inspiration to many people as well as contributed to the collective understanding of what change is. Thane also talks about the differences between positive and negative changes along with what to expect, should you choose one over the other.
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Change: How To Consistently Make Positive Change
This is a podcast all about learning how to live a good life. That is our tagline and our mantra for doing that. It’s having intention in the tension because life inevitably is filled with tensions that we get to live in the middle of. That’s a beautiful dance we’re all in. Thanks for tuning in. Thanks for joining us on this journey. If you’re new here, we’ve got interviews, fellowship and sometimes we even have some dialogue and banter between me and my cohost, Adam. Other times we even have little solo shows, as you could say. This episode is one of those. I’m going to do my best to keep it short and sweet.
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In this short little blurb, I wanted to share a few thoughts on the topic of change. There are a couple of quotes that I love that I’ve heard. The first was an ancient Chinese proverb that said, “If you do not change your direction, you will end up exactly where you are headed.” Which sometimes that isn’t a good thing a lot of times. In an old farmer’s saying, “You’re either green and growing or you are ripe and rotting.” Both of those are changing. One is positive and one is negative. That’s the state of life. We’re always moving in one direction or the other.
Winston Churchill also said, “To improve is to change. To be perfect is to have change often.” I love that. It’s an interesting way to think about it. When we improve on something or we grow in some way that’s changing and we’re striving for perfection, which a lot of us are and we know is unattainable but in that pursuit of perfection to be perfect, you have to have change often. We don’t often think about that. Change is an important part of life and a big part of being an up and comer. I’ve been thinking a lot about this topic of change and it all stemmed from this mentoring that I’ve been doing with this program called Good City Mentors.
We had Brian Larrabee on the show a handful of episodes ago for an interview. One of the things that we do in mentoring is we do a leadership curriculum for the students. It’s based on a simplistic leadership formula, which goes like this, “Leaders build meaningful relationships and create meaningful change.” It’s simple but profound in its simplicity. We’ve been talking a lot about change so part of being a leader is creating meaningful change not only for others but for yourself. This took me down a deep dive into some thoughts on what change is all about.
The first thing to know is life is honestly always moving. If you’re not growing, you’re decaying. Positive change is always the goal because we’re going to be changing in one way or another. Positive change is what we’re talking about mainly, not negative change. It does apply both ways. Negative change is more the default. Positive change is more of the intention. One thing that we know about change is it’s always possible. The first thing to understand is it’s always possible. In thinking about positive change, we have to know the difference between positive and negative change. The first thing to note is negative change will always follow when we lack intentionality.Change is not an event. It’s a process that we’re in, our entire lives. Click To Tweet
If we don’t have an intention behind what we’re doing or why we’re doing it, the likelihood of change that results from that is going to be negative. This flows from not taking action, not living with intention or not making a decision, which are all in a sense, a decision. When we don’t make a decision, that still is making a decision. This stems from trusting our feelings at the moment versus what we know to be true in the long run. It’s that short-term reward versus delayed gratification. All good things come in time, not in the moment. Positive change is what we’re trying to create both in our lives and in other people’s lives.
That’s part of the motivation. It’s not just changing ourselves, but helping change others and changing society. You always have to create that positive change in your own life first before you can create that positive change in other people’s lives. Shannon Hurley, who we had on the podcast, had a great quote where he said, “You can only take people as far as you have come yourself.” We have to first be able to create a positive change and be the positive change in our own lives before we can ever have a positive change in others. This goes back to one of my favorite sayings, “You have to lead yourself well before you can lead others well.” The same is true in creating change.
It’s simply how do we create positive change in our lives? There are five little steps that I wanted to share with you. The first step for creating positive change is to first believe that it’s possible. Not only is that possible but that’s plausible and it’s likely you are going to change. I tried to build the case. You are going to change one way or another. You have to first believe that positive change is possible. After that, the second step is to believe that it’s worth it. Believe that creating that positive change is worth it. It’s worth the effort, energy, the time and the intention needed to create that lasting change.
We have to believe that it’s possible and worth it. Third, we have to fully understand our why. We have to fully understand the reason behind why we’re making the change that we’re trying to make. We have to believe that it’s possible and worth it. We have to fully understand why we’re doing it and our why, our reason behind that change. The fourth step is to put it into practice. One of the most famous quotes of all time is, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” It’s by Gandhi. That always starts with being the change you wish to see in yourself. You can’t be the change you wish to see in the world. You have to first be the change you wish to see in yourself. We have to put this creation of positive change into practice daily by being it, living it and doing it.
The fifth step would be to maintain alignment and attachment with our vision, our overarching why so you can consistently practice the change you wish to be in the world. The only way we consistently do this is if we’re living aligned and attached to the vision and our reason for where we’re going and why we’re doing what we’re doing. I heard Tristan Walker once say, “Only with courage can you practice the same values consistently.” It’s so true. It takes courage to consistently practice what we value to be true and creating positive change is something worth consistently practicing. It takes courage but it is worth it. We have to believe that, which was the second step.
Chip and Dan Heath have a great book about making a change. It’s called Switch. In it, they said, “Change isn’t an event. It’s a process.” Change is not a one-time thing. It’s a lifelong thing. It’s a process that we’re in our entire lives. It’s a beautiful process. We have to embrace the process and that’s finding beauty in the mundane. We’re talking about in the intention in the tension series and life itself. The last quote I want to leave you with is from Theodore Roosevelt and he said, “We must all either wear out or rust out,” every one of us. My choice is to wear out. If you’re rusting out, that means you’re not making a choice, which is making a choice that’s decaying and that’s making a negative change. If you’re wearing out, that’s intentionally making the choice to create positive change in yourself so you can create positive change in others and often leave a positive impact on the world. That’s what we’re here for and we get to do that together in community. Thanks for tuning in and being a part of this Up and Comers community. We hope you have an up and coming week.
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