Ability vs. Willingness

Ability vs. Willingness

“Sometimes our ability to accept what we can’t change is tied to our willingness to change what we can.” ~Bill Crawford

Albert Einstein once said that “the measure of intelligence is the ability to change.”

But is it though?

I know plenty of intelligent people who absolutely refuse to change, either themselves or their environment.

For whatever reasons—and they have plenty of them—people will cling to attitudes, positions and feelings which no longer serve them or those they profess to love.

Or they cling to their possessions, or places, or people.

There are people who refuse to clean up their homes, clear out old stuff, or give away what they no longer need or want.


Because clinging to those things—those superficial veneers of their life—protects them from examining what real wood might exist underneath.

We too often focus on the superficial rather than seeking substance.

That’s what attachments are all about, unconscious ways to avoid the fear of loss of them, and what might be revealed if they did: “Who I am really?”

There is a particular pleasure in clinging to what is known, of judging something by its surface and not its substance: comfort, safety, proficiency, ease, a sense of self-righteousness and entitlement.

Change takes effort, not smarts.

But it takes, most of all, a willingness to try.

Veneers might be pretty, but they rest atop of and rely upon what lies beneath.

And there is generally some good wood down there.

If you’re willing to look.

“If you have these two things—the willingness to change and acceptance of everything as it comes, you will have all you need to work with.” ~Charlotte Selver


Stay connected with our Monday Morning Message

Cynthia Barlow

Founder Cynthia Barlow

Facilitator, Author, Coach

Helping businesses build their people

When your people have the skills to communicate more effectively, they can connect more easily and collaborate more productively. Not only on the job, but also in life.

Communication, Connection, and Collaboration—the three “C’s”—are the cornerstones of all successful businesses. They are the result of Emotional Intelligence in action.

More details can be found in my recent best seller with co-author Jennifer Eggers:
Resilience: It’s Not About Bouncing Back

The power of resilience within organizations and can transform an average company into a powerhouse. Yet, even in times of rapid disruptive change, there is no manual for building resilient organizations. This book is that manual.

“If you  want to build more resilience intentionally—personally and professionally—read this book.”
Fran Karamousis, Chief  of Research, Gartner


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