New Norm is a new name for Change
This past February, I celebrated my 70th birthday. During our family gathering, the term “New Norm” became center stage of our conversation. I observed the fact that the term “New Norm,” while absent from my previous 69 years in this world, now appears to be something that should be very important to me, judging from the number of articles on the subject.
But I don't get it, although the COVID pandemic has created an environment of fear amongst many people, some in the media would have you believe that we now live in unprecedented times and that we must get used to a lifestyle that may not be to our liking, as it is the "New Norm".
But is it? Let's look at some of the events in the lives of our ancestors:
Imagine being born in 1900.
In 1914, when you are 14 years old, World War I begins.
World War I end in 1918, by the time you turn 18 years old.
The conflict results in 22 million people dead.
Toward the end of the war, the world is affected by a pandemic called the ′′Spanish Flu“ that kills 50 million people.
You outlive all of this, and you are 20 years old.
At the age of 29, you survive the global economic crisis that started with the New York Stock Exchange collapse, causing inflation, unemployment, and hunger.
You are 39 when world war II begins.
It ends when you are 45.
There will be a total of more than 60 million dead.
When you are 52, the Korean war begins.
When you are 64, the Vietnam war begins and ends when you are 75.
I would think that for someone born in 1900, given the rapid introduction of one global conflict after another, their “New Norm” was actually “Change.” It’s a word that some of us have a hard time accepting, and it may not get as many “clicks” on Social Media platforms as “New Norm”.
At Vega Behavioral Consulting, we believe that our reluctance/acceptance/rejection of change is directly related to our Perceptual Style (how we see the world and act based on how we see our place in it). It is not, primarily, a reflection of laziness, procrastination, stubbornness, or silliness (although these are traits that all of us have been “blessed” within various amounts).
In a blog titled “The Catalyst and Hope of Change” Lynda-Ross states:
The differences begin with what we call Change Triggers - the Catalyst and the Hope.
The Catalyst describes what is causes us discomfort, what creates a feeling of fear.
The Hope describes what we want/need a change to result in, literally what we hope for.
Here’s an interesting thing about Catalyst and Hope. They apply to both self-initiated and imposed change.
The Catalyst draws you into the possibility of change; if it isn’t there for you, you won’t see a need for change, so you won’t self-initiate or even consider something others are trying to impose.
The Hope draws you to engage in the transition process. If you can’t see your Hope, you will resist the idea of change. Period.
Each Perceptual Style is influenced by a different Catalyst and a different Hope that align with how each style makes meaning of the world around them.
Check out the blog for a list of things that create discomfort or fear and spur us towards and away from change and how we define what we want from change.
Knowing your own Catalyst and Hope for change can help you turn imposed change (the “New Norm”) into something you can buy into. And being aware of the differences in how each style sees Catalyst and Hope can help you present change in a way that others can accept.
As we face a new world shaped by the effects of Covid-19, we need to incorporate the changes (or “New Norm” if you will) into our lives with minimum angst and reservation since the Catalyst is pretty much out of our hands, but we are very much in control of our Hopes.
What are your hopes for moving forward from the pandemic? With luck, we will begin that transition this summer. What plans can you start to put in place?
Please share your thoughts on this topic in the comment section below.
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About Ricardo Vega
Ricardo Vega is the Director of Operations at Vega Behavioral Consulting, Ltd. and a certified Perceptual Style Guide. He has over 40 years of experience in technology, product and project delivery, disaster recovery, and team coaching. He specializes in helping entrepreneurs and teams with Product Planning & Delivery, Team Building, and Change Administration. For more information, visit https://www.YourTalentAdvantage.com.
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