The whole and its parts

The whole & its parts

Making change happen

There are two ways to make change happen, one is by force, the other one is voluntary.

Sometimes change is forced, it might even be the way to go. If it is, it better has a good reason for it.

People rarely enjoy being forced to change. It is what’s at stake when we try to persuade others. The effort of persuading someone else means to juggle with responsibilities. It’s a remainder of seeing hierarchy as a means to have power or to seek control.

Voluntary change is one people seek as well as fear. What it demands, is autonomy and the will to engage. It requires to make a choice. But a choice is also a way to take a position and make it visible. It’s a risk as other people might say “I’m not like you”. It’s a hope as it opens the space to bond with others who say “I’m like you”. Inviting voluntary change by leaving the choice to the other person is an invitation to feel responsible for the choice and the change.

For those initiating change, there is no difference between both approaches. In both cases, people might engage in the change or not. Where they differ, is in the relationship which is then established.

So, how does change happen then? By taking leadership in creating a context in which change is a possibility.


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