Change is a natural part of life. Worldwide, things change every, single day, though some individuals change very little over the course of time. How people adapt to change is as variable as people are, and as change is itself. How one is brought up, where one lives geographically, and who one’s influences are, all contribute to how one adapts to change. One thing is for sure, change is going to happen. The better one deals with changes as they come, the better adjusted that individual is always going to be. Fighting change, or refusing to acknowledge it, can be detrimental to the individual. At the very least, this refusal will certainly stifle growth.
There are people who have to deal with change on a daily basis and those whose attitudes and actions don’t change for generations. Using the act of moving, as an example, some people have to move on a yearly, or even more frequent basis. People in the military are a good example. Children of military personnel learn at a young age that change is necessary. The act of moving (which is listed in the top five of life’s biggest stressors) becomes routine for military personnel and their families. This is actually an assistance to these children to be able to adapt to change in general. Then, there are people who live in the same house as their parents and (sometimes) their grandparents before them. People in these circumstances tend not to adjust well to change. If you’ve never had to deal with even a move across town (or across country) in your entire life, how are you going to deal with other changes-other stressors? Most people fall somewhere in between these two extremes, as do most individual’s abilities to cope with change.
Geographic location can have an influence in one’s ability to deal with life’s changes. It has been my experience that the further west one is from, the more easily one adapts to change-at least within the United States. Perhaps the old pioneer attitude plays a part, or perhaps people who come from the west come from families willing to deal with change. Whatever the reason, this seems to be a pattern. Having always lived in the west (Colorado and New Mexico) and now living in the Midwest (Illinois), I have observed this to be the case. People in the Midwest have a tendency to stay living with their parents for a much longer time than those in the west. This is just an example of the kinds of changes everyone has to deal with over the course of a lifetime. Now, people from the west don’t necessarily adapt to change better than those in the Midwest, but they certainly appear to have to deal with changes more often, thus giving them more opportunities for change and for growth.
Other things that can affect change include who one allows to influence him/her self. If a person’s most influential mentor is resistive to change, the same is likely to be true of the individual-and vice versa. We are all a product of all of our past experiences and those of the people closest to us.
Life is always gong to throw us curve-balls. How we choose to adapt to change shows a lot about who we are as individuals. The better one is equipped to deal with life’s changes, the better one will be adjusted to life itself. Change isn’t necessarily always for the better, but as a whole, change is good. And, the sooner one learns this, the happier and better-adjusted one will always be.