Change is not a variable. Change is a constant. Whether we like it or not, circumstances of our life change on a daily basis. Even the things that seem consistent, relationships, jobs, our homes, are on an ever-evolving spit, sometimes turned 180 degrees from how we once “saw” them. And sometimes they return to a sense of familiarity that reassure us that “things never change.” But that sense of familiarity, too, is temporary. The glacial or cyclical types of change don’t tend to bother us that much. But what about more abrupt change? What to make of it?
My school is struggling with the process of change. For many, I don’t mean “struggle” in a pejorative sense, however. The struggle just is.
We have recently made a fast-paced switch from PC to Mac. What’s more, we are also phasing in a 1:1 laptop program. (previous posts might elucidate further). There are some faculty, however, for whom the struggle is incredibly upsetting, and the inertia of the school comes as little comfort. And although I understand discomfort with meteoric change, I have to wonder if those folks were hoping or assuming that change would NOT take place, or merely hoping or assuming that it would not take place at this pace. Both of these notions, whether a hope or an assumption, is built upon a false premise. That there is anything consistent about change.
If we insist upon beholding change as this mysterious, ever-looming circumstance that we must fight to suppress, then we define ourselves by our stagnation. Rather, if we simply accept that things change, that life is an ever-present evolution, a fluid state, and that change can and will occur at an unpredictable clip, then we are characterized by our adaptability.
I happen to stand in favor of the changes that are being made. My reason is simple: I have lost nothing (other than comfort and convenience and a hint of “the familiar”) and I have gained untold multitudes.
And if you’re reading this, I encourage you to challenge me the next time you find me griping about a change that didn’t go my way. But in the end, if we live our lives and do our jobs with the expectation that circumstances WILL change, often in unpredictable ways, our powers of adaptability will be fully engaged for that inevitable moment.
And who knows, we may be the ones to drive the change.