Wisdom Workout


Transformation vs. Change

By Susan McNeal Velasquez.

The first leadership development corporation I worked for had the statement “To Grow and Progress is to Change” on their letterhead. A definition of change is to become different: to exchange, substitute or replace something.

Let’s explore this notion a little further. Perhaps the concept of change needs a definition overhaul. The differences between change and transformation seem subtle but are actually profound.

The traditional approach to change is to isolate a problematic area and decide the best way to solve that problem by creating a step-by-step plan and following it to completion. Change starts with the intellect. The intellect is a comparative tool. We discern what is good vs. bad, right vs. wrong, better vs. worse, winning vs. losing and past vs. future.

Change requires that we jump into the future, land on a desired outcome and then systematically move towards our stated goal. It calls for a change of mind, first and foremost.

This approach is worthwhile; it just isn’t the whole story nor is it comprehensive enough for the complex world we live in today.

The transformational approach requires that some basic inner development be in place before we can move ahead. Transforming the quality of our lives starts with a solid core. Let’s call it a basic “ground of being.” We must have a platform of intrinsic self-trust.

So, a logical first question is how do we build self-trust? Self-acceptance is the fuel that fosters self-trust. At its lowest level, self-acceptance requires that we tolerate what we don’t like about our lives or ourselves without protest, justification or denial.

There is a natural law that states that what we resist persists. Deny our past? We are doomed to repeat it. Pretend to be perfect to cover up our inadequacies? We will find ourselves caught in an ego web of never being as good or as bad as we make believe we are.

This mighty first step of increasing self-acceptance is to take command of our world as it is, rein in our runaway minds, and increase our willingness to lighten up.

When our inner landscape is devoid of self-acceptance, basic self-trust is replaced with habitual self-sabotage. Therefore, our newly conceived plans for an improved future are aborted due to lack of self-support. We are unable to sustain our dreams because we are keeping ourselves on a starvation diet of self-condemnation. Self-trust is the bedrock of transformational change.

Stand up for who you are today. Open your heart and your mind to the task of accepting all aspects of yourself, both known and unknown. Call to your inner wisdom; that knowledge of yourself that resides in the place that we could call your personal truth base.

Sit quietly and ask for an answer to this question: “Given who I am today and where I find myself in my life’s journey, what is the right action for me at this time?”

Listen. Allow yourself to open to and accept the voice of your own inner brilliance. Your message will either be an action you can take or a simple letting go and allowing of patience and a deeper peace to permeate your being.

Relax, release, let go and when you finally regain your sure-footedness, then it is time to face forward and resume your journey into the land of infinite possibilities.


 Susan is a local author of the emotional resource book, “Beyond Intellect: Journey into the Wisdom of Your Intuitive Mind.” Learn more at: susanvelasquez.com.





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