Why do you do what you do?

Most people I talk to want to change something in their lives. At this time of the year, people want to change more. What do you want to change? Job? House? Health? Travel? 

The first thing to think through is why you have your current job or why you live where you live. Before deciding to make a change, you need to take some time to think about some of the important decisions you made some time ago. I am sure you had good reasons to make the decision that has taken you where you are even though you might not like the result. When you know more about the history of the decision you can avoid making the same mistake again. But beware - don’t get stuck in the history and don’t start blaming yourself for making the bad choices. Just take a dissociated look at the situation you were in when you made your choice, understand that it was the best choice you saw back then, and learn why you should not make the same mistake now when you know better.

I was the Administrative Manager for a company that had multiplied. I had recruited a lot of competent people to the company, and suddenly I had to inform them that the company went into bankruptcy. How could I let that happen? Well, the fact is I was seriously worried about profitability and cash flow and presented the facts to the owners repeatedly. The owners did not listen to my warnings. One day the company lawyer came to the office and informed me that the company was in a due diligence process and was not allowed to slow down the expansion or make any major changes during the process. When the deal did not go through the company went bankrupt. I admit I considered the owners to act silly before I knew why! Could I have done something differently? Actually - not much. What did I learn? That you can end up in a situation that you did not choose and you might not even believe such a thing could happen - not even in your worst case scenario. 

When I work with change, no matter if it’s an organizational change, business process overview, new financial regulations or system development, I always do my best to figure out why it looks as it does and assume that the decisions some time ago were right back then. I can assure you it’s much easier to discuss the coming changes when I have acknowledged the history. 

So if you are about to make changes in your life - start with asking why! But make sure not to blame yourself for making bad decisions. That will not take you anywhere. 

Good luck with all your interesting choices!