I haven’t written a blog post in 64 days. My dad passed away in March, so my heart’s been elsewhere. My mom got knocked down and broke her hip three weeks ago, so I’ve been in California supporting her. Our business manager of eight years took a new job elsewhere, so I’ve been tending the business as well as clients. I am working on a new book, so my mind’s been there, and I’ve been spending much time mapping the functionality of The Change Leader’s Network site, searching for IT vendors, etc. What’s all this got to do with not writing and being in radio silence these past couple months?
If you want your change efforts to run smoothly, your stakeholders must perceive them as relevant and meaningful. Relevance comes from how the change fits in the bigger picture of their world and the organization. Meaning comes from how it touches them personally, on a deeper emotional or even spiritual level. Without relevance and meaning, adults do not turn their attention, energy and action toward something in a positive and sustainable way. It’s no different in writing a blog.
I could have faked interest in writing these past two months. Marketers would have coached me to do that, but I just wasn’t interested. The connection between me and the words wasn’t there. My creative channel was just not open. The messages and the words weren’t flowing.
So the best thing I could do was sit still:” just don’t do something, sit there!”
Too often we jump to action because we are “supposed to.” Marketers would have admonished me, “You must be consistent in your blog writing to be successful.” But sometimes internal measures of what is right far surpass external measures and reasons. Sometimes you just got to do what feels right to you. Your inner guidance is always your best compass, especially in leading change.
And that is why when dealing with resistance, in yourself or others, you invite the resistance out rather than cover it up with artificial action. Don’t engage staff to try to cover up their resistance. Rather, first engage them in the conversation about their resistance. Let the resistance be present, felt and honored, and then you will see it resove itself and the actions that follow will be driven by authentic relevance and meaning, making them far more potent and sustainable.
What is occuring in your life or change effort right now that you are covering up with busy-ness and action, rather than just sitting with and feeling? Sometimes just sitting with our resistance invites out deeper meaning, greater relevance and a more profound commitment. I know that has been true in my relationship with this blog going forward. I hope that becomes evident to you.