We all know that the world is always changing around us. Sometimes CHANGE is subtle and happens without us paying much attention. An example of a slow, subtle change might be the disappearance of drive-in movie theaters. When I was a teenager, they were very popular. Then the real estate they sat on became more valuable than the profits they generated and drive-in movies slowly moved into extinction. On the opposite end of the spectrum, a single tragic event like a tornado or a car accident can bring on enormous changes immediately. In this weekís lesson we will discuss anticipating change in our lives and how to better prepare for it.
Unfortunately, change is one of the most difficult things for all of us to face or prepare for. We all know that our physical bodies are going to change as we age, yet too few us prepare early for these changes by eating healthier or exercising more so that we may increase our odds of being healthy and fit as we continue to age. Also, how many of us study and try to improve our skill levels to peak performance, so that when our industry experiences a downturn, we might be the last to lose our value in the marketplace.
CHANGE covering the full spectrum of our life needs to be thought about; discussed; and anticipated before it occurs. Change should not be taken for granted. Just like a linebacker must anticipate an audible from a quarterback and change his strategy before the ball is snapped, we must anticipate changes occurring around us and be totally prepared before they happen.
Do you ever spend any time anticipating what might happen to you in the near future? How prepared will you be for major changes in your life due to a sudden illness or the loss of your job? Donít take anything for granted or a surprise could be devastating to you and your family. I am not saying that you should walk around scared of the future. Instead I propose just the opposite. You should be confident and fully prepared for the future. You should constantly improve your career skills and help your company to be the top of their game. That helps insure your job and your income. You should work on yourself daily to practice healthy habits and prepare yourself financially for an unexpected change.
If we are constantly anticipating change, it follows that we are constantly taking risks. This is a tough thing for us humans to accept since weíre much more comfortable seeking security. But the truth is that risk is involved in everything that we do. Letís look at a few examples:
A huge corporation anticipates that the cell phone will be the wave of the future; youíll surf the Internet on it, youíll take pictures, watch TV, and talk on the phone. This corporation invests billions on this anticipation. But this is not a risk free investment. Suppose that some other devise is invented that totally obsoletes the cell phone. Now, this may or may not happen, but if it does, the corporation loses lots of money.
What if mighty Wal-Mart purchases a million basketballs? Are they guaranteed to sell the whole million? No. Even the retail giant lives in a world with risks. What if thereís a players strike and millions of kids lose their interest in basketball. Wal-Mart would have to sell the basketballs below what they paid for them. We donít live in a risk free world.
If you purchase a house in California, you run the risk of an earthquake destroying it. Suppose you get a job working for Microsoft. You may think that youíre set for life, but what if Microsoftís main products become obsolete? Just look at GM and Ford. At one point, you could spend your entire working life at GM or Ford. But now there is a good chance that those two companies may be in the history books within the next decade.
So every move that we make carries some risk. This is a direct result of the fact that we live in a constantly changing world. The best that we can do is to stay awake at the wheel and become a student of change. We need to THINK more about the changes that are going on and be prepared to take advantage of the opportunities they present. Itís impossible to know everything thatís changing around us however we need to strive to know MORE!
Keeping up with the changes that are going on will help you navigate your way through life. If thereís a hurricane coming, you better get out of its way. If you believe that the stock market is heading lower, sell your stocks for a profit rather than wait and take a big loss. Most individuals look at what others are doing or seek others opinions. In the long-run, itís best to BE KNOWLEDGEABLE; BE PREPARED; AND TRUST YOURSELF. If youíre wrong, you learn from it, and move on. The final message here is not to worry about CHANGE. Just be prepared; because CHANGE WILL HAPPEN!