One of the main reasons why change is so difficult is the allure of what is known. The comfort of the tried and tested — the safety of defaulting to the status quo.
What underlies this is our human tendency to be loss averse. In short, we are afraid to lose what we already have. This is particularly true when what we have allows us to ‘be comfortable’ and ‘get by’. But what if we could do more than just get by?
Loss aversion can be a very useful ‘automatic mental check’ when it comes to decision making. If we fail to look beyond however, we can stop ourselves from living the fulfilled lives that we could. This is even more pertinent when the status quo fails to sufficiently prioritise our mental and physical wellbeing.
Not seeing an alternative is a key reason for defaulting to the status quo that I see time-and-time again as a coach. And sometimes, it is more than not seeing, it is not believing that there could be an alternative.
Without a pull-factor to inspire us and focus our attention, our loss averse minds will most likely end-up defaulting to the status quo. We will find countless reasons not to deviate from the track we are on, simply because there is nothing that pulls us.
I believe that we all have something that we are deeply inspired by. Something that we can each wholeheartedly identify with. It is just a matter of finding it!
Taking the time
Finding what inspires you might come more easily to some than to others. Wherever you are on this spectrum, it is important that you allow yourselves the time and space to deeply investigate and consider what that might be. And, that thing might just be what pulls you to do more than get by.
There are many in the world who live in treacherous circumstances of physical danger and extreme poverty. For those of us fortunate enough to have more of a choice, we owe it to ourselves to look beyond our default response of loss aversion. You owe yourself the opportunity to explore what might bring more meaning and fulfilment to your life.
Find out more about Harsha’s work.