Change is hard. So we’re told.
Despite the fact that the only constant is change, we still try to buck it.
Why else would things like the status quo bias exist? We like things just as they are.
You know what else is hard?
Staying the same.
Think about someone who has worked the same job for thirty years. Someone who has seen developments in technology, seen improvements and evolution in their industry, seen their colleagues grow and get better.
He’d have to ignore it all. He’d have to ignore that voice in the back of his head compelling him to move forwards. He’d have to stick his fingers in his ears, block out all the noise and all the obvious evidence that he’s being left for dead.
Look at ageing. We get to our late 20s and think this is it. This is the best I’ll ever look. So we try, really hard, to preserve it.
The volume and popularity of products that supposedly slow the ageing process is evidence enough.
But we can’t stay the same. We grow old.
As Jon Kabat-Zinn counsels, “You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.”
The waves are change. You ride them or resist them.
In Edmund Morris’ three-part biography of Theodore Roosevelt, a journalist describes one of TR’s (many) decisions to go against the grain as standing underneath Niagara Falls and trying to spit the water back up.
The overwhelming flow of change is irresistible. You can choose to move with it.
And if you don’t? Well, you’ll be dragged along by the current anyway.