The Formula For Change
We need it in order to get to where we want to go.
Yet we resist it.
I was recently reintroduced to David Gleicher’s “Formula For Change.” There have been many iterations of the formula, but in its basic form it is:
D + V + A > R
“D”issatisfaction + “V”ision + “A”ction (or First Steps) > “R”esistance (or Inertia)
I was struck by how well this formula describes the experience we all face whenever we try to make a change.
I work with people all the time who want something. They want to grow their business. They want to create content. They want to reach more people.
But when it comes to actually doing what it takes to get what they want, it doesn’t happen.
This formula can help you look and the pieces you need in order to actually make meaningful change.
The first question to ask yourself is, “Am I dissatisfied with the status quo?”
This one is tough for me because I’m not sure we have a lot of control over it. You may have it. You may not. Just because you want to create change and growth doesn’t always mean that you have to be dissatisfied with the way things are now.
And I definitely don’t believe in cultivating dissatisfaction in order to create positive change.
A business coach once told me, as we were discussing this very formula, that I would never achieve my goals because I wasn’t dissatisfied enough with my status quo.
The way I prefer to look at it is that the strength of my Vision and my Action will have to compensate for any lack of dissatisfaction.
Having a clear and compelling vision for where you want to go is also important for change. Often times people are doing lots of things, but they aren’t moving in a clear direction. But when their vision gets locked in, all of a sudden everything aligns and they take off.
I have felt that burst of momentum in my own life and business when I get clear about exactly where I’m going. However, I don’t believe that vision comes before action.
This formula isn’t a timeline. If you wait for your vision to become clear before you start taking action, you will get stuck in Innertia. It is through action that you gain clarity and hone your vision.
This is my favorite of the Change Variables because I think it is the one we have the most control over. I believe that taking action is the catalyst for all the other pieces to fall into place.
Too often I encounter people who are thinking about doing something, or planning to do something. But they don’t actually DO it.
I know that the world needs thinkers and planners, but I happen to be a doer. I get frustrated when things get stalled for too long in the planning phase. You can plan something to death.
There are strategic plans, and marketing plans, and business plans, and all kinds of plans gathering dust on shelves all over the world.
At a certain point you have to stop planning and take action.
It’s easy to get stuck in thinking, planning, procrastinating and other excuses, and never do what needs to be done to get what you want. It’s normal. We all struggle to do things that are new or outside our comfort zone. Which brings me to the last variable.
I’ve seen the formula with both of these terms – Inertia and Resistance. They both make sense, but seem, at first to be quite different. But the more I thought about it, Resistance and Inertia are very closely related.
Inertia is the tendency to do nothing or remain unchanged. It’s a powerful force that is ingrained in all matter, and in our own minds.
This is a part of the equation that we like to ignore. We think that if we have a vision for something and we take some action toward it, that things will change. When people get stuck, it is often because they haven’t recognized the power of both internal and external resistance and inertia.
A formula makes it seem like there is some fixed way to answer this equation.
Life is more fluid that.
These variables continue to evolve and even impact each other. So continue to play in the areas of Vision and Action, and you’ll be on your way to greater change.
What do you think? Have you encountered this formula before? How does it play out in your life or business? Which variable is your biggest barrier to change? Leave a comment and let me know!
If you want to talk more about creating change and things like clarity, flow, organization and creativity, and you live in the Greater Milwaukee Area, join me for a special event:
An open interactive discussion about developing more Organization, Clarity, Creativity and Growth in your business in the new year. We’ll provide inspired ideas for creating greater flow and positive change.
February 17th @ 8:30-10:00 am
Hudson Business Lounge, 310 North Broadway, Milwaukee, WI