It’s IS (not) my job & other reasons (not) TO change (or learn)

change, change management

Image from Doug Ragan's facebook page

I recently wrote a post called It’s not my job & other reasons not to change (or learn).   I thought I’d turn it around for this post.  Won’t you join me?

Here are my reasons to change.  My goal is to hit 50.  I’ll add more as time goes on.  What are yours? Feel free to add them in the comment section.

  1. You have to ask?  Really?
  2. My environment demands it. I live in Africa.  I’m constantly assessing, reassessing, changing & learning.
  3. It’s my job.
  4. How can I ask others to change & learn if I won’t?
  5. It keeps things interesting
  6. To shake things up
  7. To build on what’s working & make it better
  8. It’s exciting
  9. I’m ambitious
  10. It’s in my DNA (& yours)
  11. To keep up
  12. To catch up
  13. To be on the cusp
  14. To explore
  15. For the adventure
  16. The adrenaline learning brings is brain candy to me
  17. It keeps me creative
  18. I can always do better
  19. Because I can
  20. Because I should
  21. Because I want to
  22. It keeps my brain young
  23. To stimulate my brain
  24. It’s mandatory being a parent
  25. It’s mandatory being a woman
  26. It’s mandatory being human
  27. It’s how learning happens
  28. It’s necessary for human development
  29. It beats back resistance (mine included)
  30. It beats back boredom (mine especially)

Over to you change agent.  What would you add?



53 Responses to “It’s IS (not) my job & other reasons (not) TO change (or learn)”

  1. Melanda Says:
    January 13th, 2012 at 1:16 am

    Because few things are as much fun as proving that something CAN be done, by doing it. 🙂

  2. Rebeca Pimentel Says:
    January 13th, 2012 at 10:10 pm

    Hello to all, here my reason to change (or the reason that sometimes force me to change):
    – Is a way to contribute (to our society, environment, others)
    – to prove new ways to do, to observe, to enjoy
    – to be able to serve
    – to find or create a better way to satisfy a customer
    – to understand what’s going on …and take advantage
    – to cope with a new/different culture

    Good thinking! I can find many more!

  3. Aaron Johannes Says:
    January 14th, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    It allows me access to some cool new people who make me laugh and think.

  4. Caron Says:
    January 14th, 2012 at 8:35 pm

    – change inspires hope

  5. Jules Andre-Brown Says:
    January 14th, 2012 at 10:14 pm

    I really like 28, I was going to say the same thing. I wanted to know if you meant Human Development as in the development of an individual or the develop of humans as people interacting together.

    Perhaps it can be both.

    It’ll be better for the human development
    It’ll be better for world peace and the capacity of humans.
    It’ll be better for the entire planet.
    It can be a ceremony that will enrich the community.
    It’ll make Grandma proud 🙂
    It’s fun.

    They’re looking for someone confident to suggest this.
    They’re ready for to change something and willing to commit.
    They need to add risk to their portfolio in order to make something replicable.
    We’ll end up forever living in ACT 3 of “Hamlet” if we don’t do this.
    We’ll meet new people who resonate with this.
    It’s “Cross Silo” Collaboration
    Staff might crush it – it’s better that the team is small.
    The other department is really looking for some new juice.
    We can’t afford not to.
    We can afford our stakeholders the time to absorb and work with the change
    What we are going to be doing is going to make us so happy

  6. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 15th, 2012 at 7:02 am

    How true Mel, how true! I’m up for the challenge.

  7. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 15th, 2012 at 7:09 am

    Hi Rebeca- thanks so much for your excellent additions. Love the one about making a contribution & serving. As someone living overseas, I read an article (from North America) recently that said the top 3 friendliest countries for people to move to for work were New Zealand, S Africa & Australia. I was disappointed that people mainly moved for $ & advancement (eg not about making a contribution, expanding / stretching yourself, adventure, to serve etc.)

    Thanks for taking the time to comment. Cheers to you.

  8. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 15th, 2012 at 7:09 am

    Am grinning as I read your comment. Most excellent reason. Cheers Aaron.

  9. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 15th, 2012 at 7:10 am

    Hmm I wonder if the opposite is also true- does hope inspire change? Can you change if you don’t have hope?

  10. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 15th, 2012 at 7:16 am

    Hi Jules- great question. I meant as a whole, for the good of society, for humankind. That includes individual development as well though, so yes, it’s both.

    Love your comment about capacity- am reading some interesting work written by Jenny Pearson about capacity development versus capacity building. The latter she says, assumes no capacity. She goes on to say that there is no situation where there is no capacity.

    Ceremony- yes! I think we don’t fall back into the arms of celebration & ritual enough. My good friend Dolly Hopkins knows all about this; I’ve learned a tremendous amount from her.

    Your comment about making Grandma proud brings a tear to my eye. I wear my beloved, departed Nana’s wedding ring & am giving it a rub thinking of her. I also think it’s interesting as some families celebrate & encourage change & others not so much. My Nana was a change champion.

    Yes to crossing silos, new juice, making waves & new ways.

    Thanks so much for your wonderful additions- they are appreciated.

  11. Judy Wong Says:
    January 15th, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    While the face in the mirror may remain the same the story needs to change.

    I’m interested in a new direction,
    I’m interested in new and inspiring thinking,
    I’m interested in new meaningful connections,
    I’m interested in growth that fires up my soul.

    I get to see the world through a new lense, hopefully with new clarity and purpose.

  12. Aaron Johannes Says:
    January 15th, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    hey you’re up to 56… i’m still thinking 100 is possible and always like the number 101 🙂 #25 requires me to add:

    because i’m a man 🙂

  13. Caron Says:
    January 15th, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    The truth is I don’t know whether one can change if they don’t have hope – that’s a very deep question. I think awareness of change is necessary. I do think that being aware of even the slightest of changes can inspire hope and that if one is surrounded by others who are making changes, they can easily be inspired to join (at least I can). What’s really beautiful and amazing is when one person starts changing and it catches on – so awesome to watch it reach that tipping point and flood the heart, the person, the group, the world! lol

  14. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 16th, 2012 at 5:35 am

    Hi Judy, how poetic. Your comments certainly fire up my soul. Thanks for sharing your insights. So appreciated.

    And if I may say, as a woman, I know my face is changing when I look in the mirror. One of my goals is to accept the changes gracefully. Bring on the gorgeous gray hair!

  15. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 16th, 2012 at 5:36 am

    Hi Aaron (aka #25 man)
    Let’s go for 101. I am game.

  16. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 16th, 2012 at 5:43 am

    Have you seen the video of leadership lessons from the dancing guy Caron? It’s so insightful. It focuses on the concept of follow’ship. eg that for leaders to lead (& in leadership there’s always change) there needs to be followers and that’s at least as brave as leading.

    You bring up more excellent points. How aware do we have to be for change to happen- I mean is change any more meaningful if we are or aren’t aware of it? I think some of my most momentous changes have been preceded by my awareness of them eg I wasn’t aware when things were happening at the time, at least not as much as after much reflection.

    What inspires people to join (check out the next Rock.Paper.Scissors newsletter where I interview the incredible Emmanuel Jal- former war child) where he talks to me (among many other things) about the role of inspiration.

    (If you’re on our mailing list you’ll get it later this week & if you’re not you’ll be able to see it here.)

  17. Shelley Nessman Says:
    January 16th, 2012 at 10:59 am

    Change invites me to live in and explore the worlf from a possibility perspective!
    Change gifts me with seeing things from whole new sets of eyes- mine and anyone else who will take me up on my offer of conversation!

  18. Patrick Jobe Says:
    January 17th, 2012 at 10:24 am

    Because what is life without it?

  19. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 3:04 am

    Hi Patrick. I know you likely meant this as a rhetorical question, but I’ll answer it & would love to hear your answer as well if you’re so inclined. A life without change would mean monotony, boredom, and most importantly no bold leaps of imagination.

  20. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 3:06 am

    Hi Shelley; LOVE the notion of ‘possibility perspective’. Perspective in general fascinates me. What flies under our radar, what blinds us, what shines bright etc? It’s the basis of the Life Lenses assessment I developed.

  21. Lyle Romer Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 10:03 am

    No moment is ever just like the one previous or the one following. Time means change. To live is to change.

  22. Carol Dixon Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 10:18 am

    I change because it is fun. Although there is some comfort in the routine and the expected – the unexpected is fun! Found money in your coat pocket – fun! Sorry that is a little off topic but I was thinking of change….. get it. The idea of new and different and change – is fun.

  23. Bonnie Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    To live is to change! Change is a fact of life.

  24. Jacki Scallion Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    It’s the only way to achieve true growth
    Change is hard but remaing the same is like a slow death
    Making changes in your own life inspires others to do the same
    Change leads to open-mindedness
    Change stimulates your brain and keeps you young
    Change opens your heart and connects your soul

  25. Shelley Nessman Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 11:04 pm

    Hi again! I have this image that is such a timely metaphor for my life and change… it is that of me clinging to a rock that is in the midst of a rushing river of change.. the clinging, the resisting of the flow making me extremely tired and when I finally submit to letting go and just flowing with it- I realize how much easier it all is.. 🙂 that picture sort of stays in the back of my mind these days- so much is in flux and when I stop resisting it- I can just enjoy the trip..
    thanks for your work! I am enjoying your blog and your ideas!

  26. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 11:48 pm

    Hi Bonnie- here’s to the facts of life!

  27. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 11:49 pm

    Hi Bonnie- here’s to the facts of life! May they ever be changing.

  28. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 11:50 pm

    Hi Carol- so lovely to ‘hear’ your voice. Here’s to change – in our pockets, in our hearts, in our minds & in our lives. For fun & for life.

  29. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 11:54 pm

    Hi Lyle- thank you for your poetic comment. It’s much appreciated.

  30. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 18th, 2012 at 11:58 pm

    Hi Jacki
    Great comments! I think the difficulty that change can bring is more painful to a lot of people than ‘remaining the same .. like a slow death’. We definitely need inspiration in the area of change, change management & change-makers. Perhaps that’s the greatest gift of change-makers, is their ability to inspire.

  31. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 19th, 2012 at 12:02 am

    Hi Shelley- great image. In my mind’s eye I can see clenched fingers, turning white with effort. Going with the flow definitely has its benefits, depending on whose flow. And that’s the trick isn’t it – deciding when to:
    – fight (hang on to that rock with all your might – eg radical change)
    – flee (get out of the river and/or swim upstream – eg get to safety, recoup)
    – flow (float down the river & enjoy the journey)

  32. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 19th, 2012 at 12:02 am

    PS thanks for your kind words about my blog Shelley. I am tickled that this post has created so many comments. It’s fabulous to hear what others think.

  33. Jacki Scallion Says:
    January 19th, 2012 at 9:09 am

    Hard work
    New Experiences
    Growth =

  34. Shelley Nessman Says:
    January 19th, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Fly… Flee…. or Flow… I love it! Just so you know- I got turned onto the blog by my friend Aaron Johannes who might be a number one fan 😉 and now you can add me to that list as well!

  35. Chris Lee Says:
    January 20th, 2012 at 6:20 am

    Because there’s a new story waiting to be written.

  36. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 20th, 2012 at 6:54 am

    Hi Chris- I’m currently adapting some curriculum for locally elected leaders for the UN & the current curriculum draws heavily on proverbs from the around the world. Being a fan of the power of proverbs to pack learning into a small bite, let me say your comment sounds like a lovely proverb in the making. LOVE it. Thanks for sharing.

  37. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 20th, 2012 at 6:57 am

    Hi Shelley- thanks! I’m so glad you’re enjoying the blog, truly, I’m tickled. The fly, flee or flow is adapted from a quote from the book ‘As Above, So Below’ – “if you can’t fight & you can’t flee, flow.” It’s one of my favourite sayings. (It also has hints of the famous serenity prayer.)

    Truer words were never spoken. I think the big challenge is to pick what you’re willing to fight (aka change), what you need to flee from & truly, truly, be okay with the rest (flow).

  38. Patrick Jobe Says:
    January 20th, 2012 at 9:42 am

    Hi Lee-Anne et al:

    Yes, rhetorical, but also a bit of a mission statement. I find myself relating change and some of the more abstract concepts of growth (in knowledge, bodies of experience, additions to intuition, etc., etc.) to the more tangible example of building muscles mass – it is a process of stressing, straining, and eventually tearing. It can be a bit messy, a bit painful, a bit inducing of lip-biting and furrowed brows – but it is also the source of much of the exhilaration and excitement in life. I have to remind myself that living in a messy life, and not a cookie-cutter one, is actually the ideal, and that change is part and parcel to a good life.

  39. Jim Reynolds Says:
    January 20th, 2012 at 7:13 pm

    Because change is inevitable and it is necessary – at least until we get everything right. 🙂

  40. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 21st, 2012 at 1:08 am

    Hi Shana; thanks for your kind words. Ack! I always put a link to photos I use but somehow this one got missed. Glad you pointed it out. I got it from Doug Ragan’s Facebook account. When I did a little research on it, turns out it’s been doctored.

    Which is another great jumping off point for a discussion on culture. Like the saying on some car mirrors ‘things may appear larger in real life’ it’s the same with culture – things may appear radically different than at first glance (or second, third or thirtieth).

  41. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 21st, 2012 at 1:21 am

    I remember when I found out that building muscle involves tearing. It was a revelation to me (still is). To push the metaphor further, does change always involving breaking/tearing/pain/mess or can it also involve building/layering/adding to/blending? Two very different metaphors for change.

    As I sit in my office overlooking lush foliage that is my home in Nairobi, and remembering the monkeys I saw this morning while I was out walking the dogs, change feels like building/layering/blending.

    And when something happens that jars my sense of what is (or on a bad day, what ‘should’ be) change definitely feels like a breaking/tearing.

    Here’s to mess in all it’s juiciness. Have you read ‘A Perfect Mess: The Hidden Benefits of Disorder–How Crammed Closets, Cluttered Offices, and On-the-Fly Planning Make the World a Better Place’? It’s fabulous. I learned a lot reading it, especially how tightly structured, organized systems can be very un-resilient & brittle. eg not open to change. I liked the book so much I wrote a review of it.

  42. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 21st, 2012 at 1:24 am

    Hi Jim
    … and then someone (a committee?) will change what ‘right’ is 🙂

  43. Brenda Kneller Says:
    January 23rd, 2012 at 7:04 pm

    Change promotes “thinking outside of the box” It creates a whole new world. It’s great to shake things up a bit – gets rid of boredom and staleness of doing it the same way everyday, everyday. If we are not willing to change we are not willing to learn.

  44. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 24th, 2012 at 5:49 am

    Hi Brenda
    Love your link between change & learning. To learn means being willing to make oneself vulnerable & open to change.

  45. Jamie Lundine Says:
    January 27th, 2012 at 1:52 am

    Hi Lee-Anne. Thanks for writing about this! It’s a very timely post for me personally and I wanted to say that #19 is great “Because I can” and add:

    Because it’s difficult but I’m up for the challenge
    Because it feels right

  46. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 27th, 2012 at 2:32 am

    Hi Jamie
    What an honour to have you comment. For other folks who are reading, check Jamie out, she’s an inspiration & a changemaker with her mapping work in the slums of Nairobi. (Jamie feel free to comment back with a link you’re comfortable with people clicking on).

    You, my new friend, are definitely up for the challenge. I know I’m going to enjoy watching you!

  47. Gary Rosenberg Says:
    January 27th, 2012 at 2:59 am

    Because a butterfly is inherently cooler than a caterpillar 🙂
    Also change inspires change and by evolving ourselves, we evolve the world.

  48. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 27th, 2012 at 4:05 am

    Hi Gary;
    Here’s to inherently cool butterflies and inspiration in all it’s guises. Thanks for commenting!

  49. Jamie Lundine Says:
    January 27th, 2012 at 6:41 am

    Thanks for the support Lee-Anne! You are welcome to visit my blog:

    I will continue to read your writing with interest!

  50. Lee-Anne Ragan Says:
    January 30th, 2012 at 7:28 am

    Thanks Jamie

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