Blog post by Petrus Wessels
One of the biggest fears that many people experience and most often lead to disappointment is the fear of change. In books, movies, plays and across history some of the greatest stories ever told carry a strong theme of embracing change or overcoming the fear of change. Unfortunately, there are also the stories of not being able to overcome our fears, but they also have great lessons to teach us.
Changes like moving to a new house, starting a new relationship or a change in career can, at times impact you more than you realize. Up until a couples of years ago, I had spent most part of my career in the automotive industry. Here I experience constant change in markets, colleagues and influences. This led me to always chase a change of scenery but only to my own detriment. It held me back and I was stuck in a vicious cycle of starting out at a new company after only a year. I was afraid of making a change in industry to the not knowing what that change could lead to.
I was so afraid that any move out of the industry would be a mistake but at the same time I knew that the role I was in, was not fulfilling. My fear of change had changed into a fear of failure, but then I realized that there is no such thing as failure, only lessons for change.
In the beginning of 2017, I was offered an opportunity to join a recruitment role at CloudStream global and not having any experience in this industry, I was afraid that the change would not be the right one or that I would fail at it. I was very fortunate to have a support network that could see I was stuck and needed to take the leap and I will always be grateful for their support in those days. For pushing me to face my fears and grow, even though it was very challenging.
In the past two years I have been building my recruitment career, which not only challenged me but was also stimulating and immensely rewarding in many facets of my life. I realized the mistakes that I had made in my past came from staying in my comfort zone, fearing the discomfort of the unfamiliar. After this revelation I knew the importance of taking stock of the change that I had gone through and see that that “failures” were not at all that, but they drove me towards changes that were necessary to achieve success.
I regularly look back at certain points in my past year. My birthday, special dates in my relationships with others and career as well as family focused occasions and compare myself with the past versions and strength of relationships with others. The value that I find in my interactions with those that I love and respect as well as my success, these are all things that I measure to take stock of the changes that I have gone through and to prepare for changes that are still to come.
For the first time in my career I am in a position where I am happy when I am given an opportunity to be challenged and placed outside my comfort zone. I have learned that this is not something to fear but something to be ready for. A promise that I have made is to regularly take stock of and embrace the good changes and acknowledge when I am making changes based out of fear for the unknown, because staying comfortable is the only thing holding me back.