3 People You Meet During Change

When you decide to make a change, you’ll come face-to-face with three basic reactions.

As you begin to inform the people in your life you’re moving towards a different destination, you’ll receive feedback. When you are hearing from those you know and trust, it can be challenging to avoid putting too much emphasis on their opinions. You must keep in mind their words are from their perspective–one which is accustomed to you being where you are. In general, they’re going to come across as…

Positive Patty
Immediately supportive–and possibly flat-out excited–for your next step, Patty is sad to learn you’ll be around less, but genuinely wants to see you happy and successful. She will miss you terribly and cheer you wildly simultaneously. In some cases, she may say: “It’s about damn time!”

Make sure to attach this kind of support to your dreams “with hoops of steel.”

Shocked Sheila
When you take a few minutes to pull Sheila aside and let her know what you’re doing, she has trouble wrapping her head around the idea.  In general, she is completely terrified of change and likely has an image of you that will have to be amended.  She always thought you’d be right there in that mold and it’s a bit confusing to imagine you in a new role. However, once she overcomes the surprise and accepts your decision, she will likely morph into a Positive Patty.

Debbie Downer

Whether she knows it or not, Debbie is highly invested in your failure. She always manages to find a way to bring the negative into any situation. It’s possible that she’ll rain on your parade subtly (“Oh, that’s so scary”) or stand on the table to piss in your Cheerios (“You can’t do it!”). When you hear this, regardless if it’s from a co-worker or your best friend, remember that misery loves company. With her failing marriage and/or risk aversion, she sees little good in the world and probably never will. Embrace her kindly and tell her goodbye.

Be sure to remain confident of your goals when faced with the torrent of comments from the outside looking in. There is a reason you came to this conclusion and you’re better served by it.

Everyone else can get on board or get out of the way.

How are you going to break the news to these three people?

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1 Response to “3 People You Meet During Change”



  1. 1 Believing In Possibility « MeBuilding Trackback on March 10, 2010 at 7:38 pm
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