Connecting For A Change

Change is one of those funny words. You either love it or loath it. Some people are hardwired for change and embrace it for the new possibilities it brings and others dread it. Like it or not…change has become a way of life for all of us.

I find it fascinating how long we put up with something that we don’t like or know isn’t working anymore because we simply don’t want to go through the effort of changing it. So when my webmaster told me four months ago that it was time to redesign my website and ezine template to reflect the change in my business focus, I wined. I knew she was right but I dreaded the amount of time, energy and money it would take to change everything.

What helped me embrace this change opportunity and allowed me to tap into my own creativity was the reality that I wasn’t in this alone. We kicked off this change initiative with a three hour brainstorming session where she really encouraged me to dream and asked me what-if questions. Because of our different personalities and talents we each brought unique perspectives and ideas to the design. The more we tapped into our creativity, the more we energized each other.

Creativity is the foundation for innovation. You can’t do one without the other. My good friend and author of several books on creativity, Marci Segal, founder of International Creativity and Innovation Day (April 21st each year) says creativity is a choice. If you want to be more creative simply chose to be. I think the same thing can be said about change, sometimes we just have to choose to do it!

As you think about Perfecting Your Connecting, where might you need to change?

Perfecting Connecting® Action Steps:

1. Challenge yourself to look for ways to improve the status quo. In what areas of your business do you feel restless? Identify the stirring within you as a potential focus for change. In other words, listen to your gut. Start by asking yourself what-if questions. In a perfect world what would it look like if…?
2. Defer Judgment. Premature judgment kills creativity. Allow yourself to do divergent thinking first which means to open up and let the ideas flow. Convergent thinking comes much later and is used to evaluate and analyze. Force yourself to think freely without passing judgment.
3. Write ideas down! As I was working on this redesign I kept a small notepad in my purse and a file in my computer and any time I heard, read or experienced an idea for my new website I wrote it down. Sometimes those ideas came at 2:00 AM! I often showed up for design meetings with multiple post-it notes and scribbles that only I could decipher but I never lost track or forgot an idea that way.
4. Remember collaboration is king. Find other experts you can brainstorm with. Two heads are always better than one!

I hope you like the changes on my website and e-column template as much as I do. We’re still not done and we have a list of continuous improvements but it’s much shorter than it was four months ago! I’ve never met anyone who said change was easy. But I have met a lot of people who were glad they changed.