Bijgewerkt: 29 apr 2020
My name is Nicolien van den Berg and at this moment I am busy with a positive mindset and healty lifestyle. I also do my internship at The Green Happinness, which I talk further about in this blog. Have fun reading.
A sexy, soulful, and confident life, that sounds good, doesn't it? Since we are so busy with performing, and standing out, sometimes we forget to look at ourselves. We tend to forget our own health conditions. The organisation ‘The Green Happiness’ inspires its consumers via books, social media, retreat programs, and essential oils to help them to eat more consciously and, subsequently, making them feel more energetic, radiant and sexier! Not just to make them happier, but also to have a positive influence on the environment, animal welfare, and the planet. In other words: a sexy, soulful, and confident life.
A few weeks ago, I met one of the co-founders of The Green Happiness, where we talked about a construction builder. If you cannot picture this yet, let me help you; a construction builder is probably a large and strong man, a bit rude when dealing with people, he eats, a lot, and what he specifically eats is meat! We talked about an actual construction builder, a man, who felt like he could not be himself at work because he is ashamed of his choice to eat vegan.
Due to this question, certain questions arose inside my head. Because, in what society are we living if we cannot be ourselves when it comes to deciding what we want to eat?! Moreover, does this say more about the people who eat meat or more about the people who are vegan? That led me to the acceptance of change. In this blog, I will dive deeper into how acceptance and change in our society connect.
I am going to do a project for The Green Happiness. With the following starting point: how can we inspire people to eat vegan more often, without making them feel pressured.
Change can come in all sorts of ways, changes in politics, changes in technology, changes in care, changes in a hierarchy or way of working in organisations and so on. In my project, it is about the change in food, but I believe it goes deeper than that, through believes, habits, values and cultures.
While I was coaching my so-called ‘coachee’ during my Minor ‘Powerful Coaching’, I needed to dive deeper than the surface to find out what was obstructed in the motivation for a person to change. This was often about personal development changes like; becoming more assertive or burn-out and stress-related questions. Individual changes are often very difficult. Imagine how difficult a change in a society is when dealing with countless individuals.
For most of human history, our world changes very much and very quick. Technical, economic, social and political changes for example. Changes in technology, for instance, could be really beneficial. We see what it brings us, it is clear and certain. But when it comes to social change, it tends to turn out
seeing that our nostalgic, ways of doing, are changing. Change frustrates human nature because it sweeps old structures away (Arbab, 1993). In other words: when a social change is happening, human interactions and relations are involved, in which change occurs in cultural norms and values as well.
I found a really nice article where they talk about change as well as transition and what the difference and connection is. Change is based on a situation, something changes about the way of working, for example. Transition goes deeper, then we talk about the psychological process people go through to come to terms with the new situation. Change is external and transition is internal.
I will translate the change and transition aspect in our society, to when it comes to the change of becoming vegan to give you a visual. The change is that we now realize that producing meat is bad for our environment. Due to the innovation in technology, we are now able to receive all this information. Which makes that we get confronted by this almost every day. This effects the transition we experience inside. We experience something within ourselves. Some are faster because they are more open to change, other people need to have a longer time to progress in the change. Due to beliefs, values, norms, they have known for their whole life already.
The transition is explained by the transition curve. The transition curve exists of seven phases (see the model on the left). Acceptance comes in the middle of this curve and is defined as: “the first step for someone is to be able to let go of old attitudes and behaviours which have become comfortable”. In this phase, someone knows and realizes old patterns need to change, but still is searching towards the ‘how’. This can cause frustration and depression, because of not knowing what to put in place of the old behaviours and attitudes (Lockhart, 1995). This, for example, could be someone who realizes eating vegan is better, but that he does not know how to approach it. Or taking a completely different example, when someone is fired. He also needs to go through this curve. First, it would be a shock, because his life will change unexpectedly, it gives chaos, but when time passes he will accept it and he will start to test again to give meaning. This to be able to live with the change and even to take new steps in and after the change.
I think that we are now at a certain point in society, where a lot of changes happen. In my first blog, I write about the many possibilities we now have. That makes that we daily have to decide whether we want to go along with the change or not. Yet it is also for most people the same, but these people start accepting the change later, because the change does not come so much from them, but from the environmental pressure that they may experience about the change.
In my opinion, that is mainly the difference between change and transition. The change in society and the transition in people how they deal with it and what happens in the person who is about the change. At the beginning of the post, I shared the story of the construction builder who became vegan. I believe he is still struggling in his transition because he is still ashamed based on his choice to become vegan. He tries to integrate it in his life, but there is still something within his identity which is still not accepting it for the full 100%. That could be something in his beliefs, his character or maybe his past, I do not know. What I do know and believe as well is that when change is happening, we could tend to go too fast to the integration of something new, even though we have still not accepted the current situation. I believe that if we do so, the new integrated behaviour won’t last for the long-term, and also won’t make you happy. Which I believe should be the outcome when you have progressed through the transition.
At the beginning of this post, I told you I was interested in the connection between acceptance and change. Now I know, because change is external, and the acceptance is the transition which people need to go through when external change is happening.
Since I know now that change is external. I feel like I can use this information within my project. When we want to make the change where people do not feel pressured to eat vegan again, I know now that I need to focus on making the transition within people to feel the acceptance of being able to eat vegan without feeling pressured. Only when we accept it ourselves, we can make the change and I hope I can make this happen.
I hope that I firstly, have inspired you in a way to cope with changes in your own personal life, and how you then can go through your personal transition. Secondly, I hope that I have broadened your perspective on how to deal with social changes and that you keep in mind that when something is changing externally, people have to go through it internally first.
Have you ever experienced difficulties with change? Let me know in the comments, perhaps I can help you go through your transition curve!
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