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Death, Taxes and Change

Posted By: Lonnie Haynes on February 12, 2015

My friend’s email signature line includes a quote: “I just want to be the guy my dog thinks I am.”dog leather leash

I love that! Who doesn’t want to be That Guy?

The guy my dog thinks I am understands that change is inevitable, like death and taxes, and that it will happen whether or not he’s ready for it. How you deal with change can determine the trajectory of your life from that point forward.

Some people call them pivot points: those moments when your life suddenly goes in a different direction. I see it here firsthand every day. As a recruiter with a leading staffing and placement agency, I take change management very seriously. People are incredibly vulnerable when they are laid off, terminated, demoted or just unhappy in their jobs or careers.

People react differently to this vulnerability. Some blame their bosses or companies, and others blame themselves. Blaming yourself isn’t such a bad thing if you use that blame to do something constructive. You can’t change your boss or the company, but you can learn from your mistakes with an honest, insightful self-assessment. Changing yourself is no different from changing anything else: people like what they know more than they know what they like, and they may be so comfortable in their imperfection that their refusal to improve gets in the way of their personal growth.

If you feel the uncertainty of change, you’re not alone. Every candidate who walks through our doors at Brookwoods Group is uncertain at some point during his or her career. And as these people stand at the abyss of profound change in their lives, I try to share with them what I have spent so many years learning and fine-tuning: you must truly know yourself and understand the behaviors that have handicapped you before you can ever begin to make improvements.

Marshall Goldsmith’s blog post titled “The Secret to Becoming the Person You Want to Be” is a great resource for anyone beginning a journey of self-discovery. His Wheel of Change model of Creating, Preserving, Eliminating and Accepting is an amazing process that can guide you to make the changes you know you need to make but can’t or don’t.

You have a choice every day. You can either live with the person you are or become the person you and your dog want you to be. And when you’re faced with the uncertainty of a change you can’t control, there’s no better time to improve yourself, which is something you can always control.