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In my last blog post I talked about some of the poor reasons we use to avoid change.  This month I’d like to talk about the other side of that coin.  

What are some of the good reasons for embracing change in 2020?

  • Honesty
  • Confidence
  • Others

  .   A good reason to embrace change in 2020 comes from being honest with yourself.  We all have areas in which we aren’t strong and need to grow in.  Admitting it is certainly a key step. 

More than just admitting it, though, being honest about your shortcomings causes you to take ownership of those issues.  When you own something you take care of it and deal with it. Owning the areas in which you’re not the strongest makes you create a specific plan to improve in them.  

There is no shame in not knowing everything in the fire service.  Be honest about it and take the required steps to fill in the information gaps.

     A second good reason to embrace change in 2020 stems from having confidence in yourself.  I’m not talking about a narcissistic attitude in which you believe you can do no wrong.  If that’s you, see reason number one above.  

Sometimes we don’t push for change because we lack healthy self-confidence.  We feel like we haven’t been on long enough, don’t get enough runs, or think no one will listen to us.  These are just forms of resistance or defense mechanisms.

Be confident that you have something to bring to the table; everyone has a unique perspective to share about a situation.  Go out and build on what you’ve been learning and share it with someone else. Get involved with discussions about issues in your department and be confident that your proposed solutions have some merit.  

     A third reason to embrace change in 2020 is that you desire to put others before yourself.  Many times the reason the system is broken and needs changing is that too many people put their own interests above the other members.  They create unhealthy situations that only benefit themselves or their cronies.

Change the broken system by talking to those around you to see what concerns they have.  Take an active interest in those who are often left out of decision making such as younger members or non-officers.

Be a voice of change even if you get no personal benefit.  Don’t support change because it is advantageous to yourself, support change because it is the right thing to do.  Putting others first shows that you are concerned for the good of the department and are committed to its success.

Action Steps:

  • Write down one thing you’re knowledgeable in and one thing where you need to improve.  Be honest.
  • Take a specific action towards sharing your knowledge from step 1 with others.  Create a learning plan for the area of improvement from step 1. Be confident.
  • Identify one person or small group of people that you can support even if you get no outward benefit.  Be others-centered.

There are many more good reasons to embrace change in 2020, but if we use these three mindsets as a foundation, we will be much further ahead in our respective departments.  

Change should not be feared or resisted.  It should be done for the right reasons.

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