Recognising Your Own Change

April 2021

I find it quite fascinating how we can recognise change and growth in others, yet we seem to overlook how much we change and grow ourselves. Is it because we’re busy with getting on with life? Busy with putting one foot in front of the other? Or that we’re so used to seeing that face in the mirror every day, that we overlook the changes? Or is it because we’re watching everything happen so slowly, that we forget to step back and look at the big picture… at how far we’ve come? I think it’s a mix of all of the above.

If I had to relate it to something else, I’d relate it to a grassy field that you’d visit. If you went there every day, you probably wouldn’t notice how much the grass grows each day, but if you went there every few weeks, you probably would notice the difference. The same goes with buildings in a city. If you go in every day, you’d get used to seeing the little changes that happen every day – the buildings being built, the shopfronts changing, the different signages, etc. You’d probably take it all in as “normal” because you see them all happening so slowly. But if you didn’t go into the city often, you’d notice the changes; And the longer that you’re away, the more prominent the changes are. Why? Because you have an image of how things were and you have the comparison of how things are. The bigger the differences, the more you notice the changes.

So let’s bring this all back to people. To you and me, to be specific.

I’ve gone through a tremendous amount of growth and change over the past few years, but I never thought about how far I’d come, until someone else pointed it out to me the other day. And then I stopped and looked back. That’s when I noticed that last year alone contained a great deal of dramatic changes (aside from the global pandemic). When I was working through it, I felt pushed, stretched, and tested. Some days were better than others but overall, it was just one foot in front of the other as I focussed on improving just one thing each time. I never thought about all the things that I’d accomplished at the end of each day, week or month. I just kept moving forward. I kept looking to the next goal or task to complete. I learnt how to do things differently… better than how I’d done them in the past, but that still didn’t make me stop and look back on how far I’d come; Learning and growing just made me want to do more, and so I did… without stopping.

It’s said that a person is never truly satisfied. That once you get what you wished for, you wish for the next thing. And when you get that, you wish for something more. It never really ends. There’s always something else. So you keep pushing forward. But do you remember when you wished for what you have now? For what you know now? For where you are now?

Sure, parts are the same as they were, but so much more is different… it’s a lot of little things that are different to how they were… a lot of little things that together, make a lot of big things. Some physical, but most aren’t, and maybe that’s why we don’t see it as clearly as others do. Because we can’t see those differences with our eyes – they’re what we see in others with our feelings. So right now, take the time to stop and feel how far you’ve come… how much you’ve changed… and give yourself a high-five for all that growth. You’re amazing.

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