Last few weeks, I have been very irritated with people around me who needs to change but are not changing, this irritation turned to frustration and eventually to the elusive question “Do People Really Change?”. This led me to interesting conversations with many people and most of them believing that People don’t really change. In one such conversation, the person posed the question back to me asking “Have you changed?”. This hit me very hard and I had to be true to this person (& myself). I took a while to reflect back on my life and the truth was that in many ways I have not changed too, I have been same whether they be aspects that are good or not so good. Upon reflecting a bit more, what was also true was that I have grown in my life, grown in the way I look at things, grown in the way I deal with people, grown to accept a few aspects about me and others, grown and made peace with my past.
So I wondered what made me grow? Was it an external event or a person or something truly intrinsic… the answer for me was, all of these. Growth or in other word Transformation happens when we go through some transition in life. For ex, Marriage, Becoming a Parent, Death of a closed one, Career change, Change of City, Divorce, Retirement are all events that lead to transformation, the way in which our lives alter permanently. For me Marriage altered the way I used to function from just thinking about ‘me’ to thinking about ‘us’ in every aspect of my life. My son’s birth altered the carefree person that I was to a responsible (& sometimes paranoid) father. My Mother’s death altered the dependent part of me to step up and learn to be independent. I never really thought that these events have had so much impact on me, these events have shaped my life and has contributed to my growth. These transitions have led to my transformation.
I also realised that some people in our lives contribute to our growth as well, I have been fortunate to have many such people in my life like my group of friends, my spouse, my son, my mentors, my business partners, my colleagues and bosses that I have worked with have all contributed to my growth by either being who they are or through some soulful conversations or sometimes just their presence creates a space in which I feel very alive and optimistic.
There have also been times where the growth has been intrinsic, these are times when I was truly connected with myself and the higher power which has helped me create things in my life which once appeared impossible. This connection with myself has helped me to connect with people in a way that has taken our relationship to next level.
In all of these, one thing was common for me which is my willingness to grow. I had chosen to grow in these areas. So the conclusion that I have about this is that people don’t really change but they do grow if they really want to.
With this many questions do open up, so what if people are not willing to grow and what if their choice of not growing is impacting your life? what do you do then? Well am on this enquiry, do share your thoughts on what do you do in such situations