Times Are A’Changing
It seems a good time to write about change.
Everything in life changes. If weÃ¢â¬â¢re not changing, weÃ¢â¬â¢re dead.
But then, we knew that. Knowing how we respond to the changes that can happen is key to being a leader, more importantly to knowing who we are. . . . .
I was going on a business trip.
When I travel I have all things in order days ahead. Otherwise, a little nagging voice reminds me that IÃ¢â¬â¢m likely to forget something that will cause me to miss my plane or get to the airport without my bags. This advance routine allows time to add in things that I forget on the first try.
I had everything arranged for a meeting. It was still two days before my flight. I got a note saying a good friend had decided to attend the same meeting. The staff assistant had changed my seat assignment so that my friend and I could sit together.
I froze. It didnÃ¢â¬â¢t feel good. I didnÃ¢â¬â¢t understand why I felt upset. I wanted to sit with my friend. The new seats were better.
Why was I ticked that no one asked? My answer was so obvious. She had done me a personal favor. I should be grateful. What was going on?
I took a walk around the building to find out. Halfway around I got the answer — structure damage. The new seat assignment had changed the picture in my head. It shook the foundation I had so carefully laid.
Everyone suffers from structure damage now and then.
IÃ¢â¬â¢m a fairly laid-back person, but IÃ¢â¬â¢ve got two places where IÃ¢â¬â¢m not -Ã¢â¬â when IÃ¢â¬â¢m getting ready to travel and when IÃ¢â¬â¢m conceptualizing a project. I try, but I don’t always see that I’m in high-structure mode when I am. At least, I can realize what rattled me when I give the wrong response so that I can explain and apologize. Luckily as I get older, I need less structure, because I’ve done a lot of things before.
Some people need more structure than others. What sorts of things mess with your structure? Do you know?
–ME “Liz” Strauss
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