How To Change When Change Is Hard

Are you amazed by transformation? Most of us marvel at how things can change over time and the pace of change is increasing. If we are going to be next generation leaders then we need to learn how to embrace change and we need to create successful lasting change for ourselves and others.


Why is successful change in our families, workplace and lives so hard?

We start out with great and admirable goals and fall short – OFTEN!


90% of people who lose weight gain it back.

Only 1 in 4 people who have a heart attack, stroke change habits.

Only 8% of people who make New Years resolutions keep them.

The majority of people, 76% live paycheck to paycheck.

We all need to change in some area of our lives. For me that includes a change of heart!


The apostle Paul tells us:

…to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Ephesians 4:23-24


In the book Switch: How To Change When Change Is Hard, Chip and Dan Heath uncover how the primary obstacle to change is a conflict built into our brains. The brain’s made of two systems: the rational and emotional. They use the metaphor of an elephant and its rider to help people understand this idea.


Elephant = the emotional side of our brain that loves routine

Rider represents = the rational side of our brain that wants change


Our efforts can collapse under this tension. But if we learn to overcome it, change can happen quickly.


Switch shows that successful change follows a pattern. Learn the pattern and you can make changes that matter to you. Everyone can change by developing a three-part understanding of successful change.


You must learn to do three things:


Direct The Rider:

A Follow the bright spots. Investigate what’s working and clone it.

B Script the critical moves. Don’t think big picture. Think next step.

C Point to the destination. Change is easier when you know where you’re going and why.


Motivate the Elephant:

A Find the feeling:  Make a person feel something that inspires them.

B Shrink the change:  Break down next steps so that it doesn’t scare the Elephant.

C Grow People:  Cultivate people and instill a growth mindset.


Shape the Path:

A Tweak the environment: Change the situation and the behavior changes.

B Build Habits:  When behavior is habitual it doesn’t tax the Rider.

C Rally The Heard:  Good behavior can be contagious. Help it spread.


Read some inspiring success stories in this book:

  • “The lowly medical interns who managed to defeat an entrenched, decades-old medical practice that was endangering patients.
  • The home-organizing guru who developed a simple technique for overcoming the dread of housekeeping.
  • The manager who transformed a lackadaisical customer-support team into service zealots by removing a standard tool of customer service.”

If we don’t learn this skill we’ll find ourselves with the same regrets we’ve had in the past.


What could this resource equip you to do in your work, your family, in you?


Attitude            Have you failed to make the kind of lasing change you want?

Action                Order Switch and learn how to make lasting changes in your life.

Question           What do you want to change first?

Resource           Switch: How To Change When Change Is Hard, Chip and Dan Heath

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