Change is incredibly hard. Most of what we do is habit. This pandemic is upsetting those habits and teaching us new ones. Hopefully positive ones. We are being forced to change.
I covered the emotional stages of change in an earlier post– some of you recognize them to the right.
However, there is a large segment of our population that is actively resisting change. They are aided in that by disinformation that propagates from a variety of sources. The Internet not only is being exploited by various political, national, and religious groups but also by individuals. The guy who used to stand on a park bench and rant to whoever is misfortunate enough to be in earshot can now rant on the internet. And some of them get support from like-minded bench screamers.
Many of them will not change. Not matter what the circumstances. We now have FIVE TIMES the death toll of 9-11. New York lost 799 people yesterday alone. We also know that deaths are being under-reported. Some cited with different causes. But also, terrifyingly, there are a number of people who have died alone in their apartment or house and have not yet been found. Let that horror sink in.
Yet, the reaction of many is muted. I’ve been accused of over-hyping the threat, yet as more days pass, my “over-hypes” turn out to be understatements. Yet the same people stick to their party line.
What does it take to change? The first is a mindset that a large percentage of people are simply incapable of. It’s saying the three hardest words: “I am wrong.”
After all, if everything is going great, why do we need to change? But everything is not going great.
The Three Steps of Change
- You have a moment of enlightenment.
- You make a decision to take a different course of action from what you have been doing.
- Commitment to your decision leads to sustained action, which brings about permanent change.
COVID-19 should be a huge moment of enlightenment. 15,000 dead should be. Millions out of work. All should be hitting home. And they are despite the liars and deniers.
The hard part is getting those who can’t see what’s right in front of them to have a moment of enlightenment. Sadly, for rural America, which has tended to view COVID-19 as something they don’t need worry about, the reality is hitting. What needs to be understood is that NYC has been MORE prepared in terms of hospitals, ICUs, ventilators, etc than most of the country.
Unfortunately, what we’re seeing among many deniers is not an enlightenment but a doubling down. The more the facts say they are wrong, the more they insist the facts are wrong. “Fake news” is their rallying cry. Rarely do they offer any “real” news in rebuttal with any facts because the reality is they are wrong.
The decision to change is being forced on many of us. For others, we have an opportunity to do things differently. Our most valuable asset is time and now many of us have time to do things we were always putting off.
Sustained action is something the Army is good at. We called it training. Do something new long enough, it will become a new habit. As this blog goes on one month and lockdowns for many have lasted for weeks, we’re all seeing our habits changing.
Let us change for the better!
If you’re interested in more information on character and change, check out the free slideshow titled Characters under Writing on my free slideshow PAGE.
The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also now in Kindle Unlimited.
The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)