It’s never easy or comfortable to admit your failings. In fact, your brain protects you from considering such things by using techniques as minimizing, ignoring and excusing. For the most part, if you want to seriously consider where you fall short, you have to actively engage your thinking to listen for and accept your flaws before you can overcome them.
Well, here’s your chance to take a closer look at yourself regarding the one thing that prevents your progress and growth: resisting change. At no time are your natural defenses more active than when you are being asked to change a perception or behavior. In fact, psychologists have identified numerous techniques you use to “protect” yourself from the dastardly “c” word. Here are a few that I see in professionals. Many of them are fears.
1. Fear of losing status: especially if you enjoy a certain reputation with the current way.
2. Discounting the value of the change: the effort won’t produce results that are worth the effort.
3. Fear of the unknown: unsure of all that could go wrong.
4. Resist to “protect” your co-workers: wrapping your resistance in an altruistic package.
5. Prove that the change is wrong or bad: holding out to demonstrate your superior judgment or the error of their ways.
6. Fear of failure: the initial incompetence you will experience is overwhelming.
While there are numerous others, you are likely a few favorites, depending on the situation. Remember, your self-protection is at stake, so the next time a change initiative comes your way, notice your natural resistance and get to it’s root. Don’t let your gremlins overtake you.