Radio Silence

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? transistor radio

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.


  1. Sep 18, 2012
    1:46 am

    Minda Stackelhouse

    Leaning into resistance and learning to be comfortable with it is such a challenge as a leader. We constantly want to resolve or fix but experience teaches us that this only covers up the problem. Real solution comes when we allow ourselves and others to feel the resistance, study it, and learn from it.

    • Sep 18, 2012
      2:23 pm

      Dean Anderson

      Minda, Well said. I think of resistance as bread crumbs to success…or enlightenment. Follow the trail into resistance and it leads to an opening, transformation and breakthrough.

  2. Sep 10, 2013
    3:50 am

    Alyson Cartagena

    It seems at times that we as humans are interested in a “keeping things rolling” attitude without placing attention to the content of work. Taking some time to avoid the “rat race” (especially when it is not one that we created nor believe we have entered)truly allows for genuine and thoughtful work. Truly that is the work for which we can be proud.

  3. Dec 9, 2013
    8:30 pm

    Suzanne Danielle

    Thank you Linda sharing about your radio silence. I can resonate.
    For several years after experiencing two deep personal losses, I resisted where I was more often than not. I so often would believe that I “should” be in a different place, I could not understand why I could not just “move” and get back into the pace of my life. I functioned well enough so that from the outside people did not perceive me struggling and resisting where I was, but it was and privately struggling. I was operating at a good 40 – 50%. I sought out help from professional Coaches to help me get back to my “old self”, yet again only to find myself still “stuck”. The more I tried to think my way out of my grief the more frustrated and confused I felt. Resisting where I was and feeling “stuck” undermined my confidence unnecessarily.
    Recently I have had a breakthrough; it unfolded naturally. I am now feeling and living my life with renewed energy and commitment. As I reflect on my journey, I understand with compassion and see the meaning of my process (I am sure I will continue to gain more insight overtime). The more I embrace and respect exactly where I am, the more I remain present and conscious the more I am able to move forward. There are many times in our lives when this is so hard, even for professionals trained in personal and organizational change. Resistance is human. I am once again reminded, what we resist persists; being still and present are healing actions.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *


With this extensively upgraded second edition, Dean Anderson and Linda Ackerman Anderson solidify their status as the leading authorities on change leadership and organizational transformation. This is without question the most comprehensive approach for leaders who are serious about making change a strategic discipline. Beyond Change Management is an intelligent book by two of the most knowledgeable and accomplished masters of their craft, and it’s one that every conscious change leader should adopt as their guide to creating more meaningful organizations.

Jim Kouzes
Coauthor of the bestselling The Leadership Challenge and The Truth About Leadership

Read this great book by Dean Anderson and Linda Ackerman Anderson and learn how to use their multi-dimensional approach to lead transformation masterfully and consciously!

Marshall Goldsmith
World-renowned executive coach
Author of the New York Times best-sellers, MOJO and What Got You Here Won’t Get You There

An important move toward a more integral business consulting approach, very much recommended for those interested in the topic and ways to actually apply it. 

Ken Wilber
Author, The Integral Vision, A Brief History of Everything, and over a dozen other best-sellers

Dean and Linda are core to the field of conscious change leadership, and continue to stretch and push its boundaries in this rich and deep compendium. This is a must read from two consummate thought leaders who have devoted their careers to developing highly successful change leaders. Read it and immediately improve your change leadership or consulting success.

Bev Kaye
CEO, Career Systems International
Author of Love 'em or Lose 'em: Getting Good People to Stay

This book is about mastery of leading the transformational change process written by masters of the craft.  For corporate leaders and consultants who consider themselves committed students of the process of organizational change.

Daryl Conner
Chairman, Conner Partners
Author of Managing at the Speed of Change and Leading at the Edge of Chaos

Beyond Change Management is a timely how-to guide for leading change in the 21st century. It provides both a conceptual roadmap, and practical tools and techniques for successfully transforming organizations.

Noel Tichy
Professor, University of Michigan
Co-author with Warren Bennis of JUDGMENT: How Winning Leaders Make Great Calls

Once again, Dean and Linda have nailed it! Beyond Change Management is an extraordinary book examining the shifts in change management that have occurred over the years. This book offers real, practical solutions for change practitioners to become extraordinary conscious change leaders.

Darlene Meister
Director, Unified Change Management
United States House of Representatives

Powerful business solutions to the current chaos facing many organizations today. Dean Anderson and Linda Ackerman Anderson get to the heart of change, the human touch, by using timeless techniques and tools.
Ken Blanchard
Co-Author of The One Minute Manager and Leading at a Higher Level

Having applied this methodology for two years to manage change inside Microsoft, it has been instrumental in our ability to land change effectively, engage employees and deliver results quickly. The Change Leader’s Roadmap allows us to lead change with precision and minimal outside consulting, while at the same time growing change leadership capability internally. This is the most complete change methodology we have found anywhere.

Pete Fox
General Manager, Corporate Accounts
Microsoft US

This newest edition of The Change of Leader’s Roadmap is an invaluable, comprehensive and practical guide for envisioning an organization’s desired future, designing the structures and practices necessary to make it happen, and implementing them effectively. The book describes the change process in nine distinct phases and outlines the activities and tasks that need to occur in each phase. It provides change leaders with an essential map for successfully traversing the complex and uncertain terrain of transformational change.   

Thomas G. Cummings
Professor and Chair, Department of Management & Organization
Marshall School of Business
University of Southern California

This is the next best thing to having Dean, Linda and the Being First team riding alongside your complex change initiative. The Change Leader’s Roadmap breeds confidence in senior executive “Champions” to guide not just a successful transformational change, but most importantly, to develop the mission critical organizational CULTURE that will ensure unparalleled return on investment. Nothing I have seen in my 32 years of leading change comes close.

Jeff Mulligan
Former CEO, Common Wealth Credit Union
Mayor, City of Lloydminster

After implementing more than 2000 business strategy and operational excellence initiatives, we set out to find the best change methodology and toolbox in the world. The methodology this book describes is it! Study it thoroughly, because the thinking, process approach and pragmatic tools really work!

Thomas Fischer
Director COO
Valcon Management Consultants A/S

A practical, step-by-step guide for change leaders, managers and consultants. The book provides conceptually grounded, real world, time tested tools and guidance that will prove invaluable to those faced with navigating the challenges of leading organizational change in today's turbulent times.

Robert J. Marshak, Ph.D.
Senior Scholar in Residence
MSOD Program, American University
Organizational Change Consultant