By now, we know that our brain is an energy conservation machine. Anything that sucks energy is our brain’s enemy. Change is one of them.
We know that change is inevitable and worse the outcome is unpredictable. Anything that is unpredictable sucks a lot of energy.
Have you seen this happening at your work place where you do scenario planning?
Have you struggled to present many options for the project?
Have you noticed, the people who can handle ambiguity have better titles and fatter pay checks?
when you make decisions, have you noticed, we get very very tired because we have to think so much?
Chaos is not a preferred state for human brain. Multiple emergent paths and not having a clear decisive outcome is hard on us.
The unknown unknown causes anxiety because the brain says I don’t have all the information I need to make a clear decision. So it will try and find it in different resources and that sucks a lot of energy. We are cognitive sloths 😝
Building a new scheme or a pathway in the brain is a lot of effort. Any effort is energy intensive. This is why habit formation is hard. We like to be the way we are doing minimal work.
The other aspects that makes change hard is: Human beings are control freaks. Well, in a nice way science says that we like to have an internal locus of control. This is why we cherish power. We like to be the controller. We want to influence the outcome. with change being inevitable, it is also not always under our control. When the control shifts from internal locus to external locus it makes it hard for us to handle.
We go to a point to even lose stuff to have that locus of control. Sometimes it is irrational but our need for control will drive us crazy.
So how the hell do we manage this biological block then, you may ask?
Collaboration is key. Yes that is your strategy to go through change.
Become a part of a larger process and invite people to be a part of the process, this way the cognition is distributed and fresh ideas come to life. This is why we say, surround yourself with great minds so that you are shaped by their ideas.
The most important aspect we need to take care in this collaboration is everyone in the group is joyful, friendly, warm and open to ideas. Having one bad apple will destroy your change process. This is where work CULTURE matters.
We are already blocked by biology and now you want another human being to block you further? Stay away from such scenarios and manage you change by being a part of. community which is welcoming, warm and loving. It is important to tell our brains every now and then, it is ok to go through change and we are safe.
Dealing with people’s cognitive differences, creating a safe space for collaboration, forming habits, establishing routines and enhancing collective resilience is a whole another topic by itself and let’s dig in later.
For now, if your brain is resisting change, speak to a friend or a coach or a mentor and get some fresh ideas and perspectives. Changing will be much easier than dealing with it yourself.
Yo! Thanks for reading. Means a lot to me as attention is the hardest currency 🙏
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