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Monday, August 24, 2009

Don't Be Surprised ...

"If you keep doing what you're doing", says @JohnIMM "don't be surprised if you keep getting the same results! Nothing changes without change!"

@j4ngis objects: "Lots of thing changes when you do the same thing. If you every day yell at your wife your marriage will (likely) change."

However, the key phrase in John's remark is "don't be surprised". If you yell at your wife every day, you can be astounded (and thankful) if your marriage nonetheless improves.

By the way, "don't be surprised" is one of those phrases that is very easily overlooked: this is a phenomenon that is often utilized by hypnotists and NLP practitioners. This is how it works. If the hypnotist simply told you "You will be able to relax before your exam", your natural response might be "I doubt it, that's never happened before". But if the hypnotist tells you "Don't be surprised if you should find yourself able to relax before your exam", the statement gets split into two pieces for separate processing. One part of your brain will go "You are wrong, I will be very surprised", while another part of the brain goes "Okay, so I should relax before my exam". Thus you can achieve the desired outcome (relaxation) without actually obeying the hypnotist.

Coming back to the question of change: @j4ngis continues: "purpose of a change is to change a system or keep status quo of (some aspect of) the system." But there's a twist, as Kevin Kelly wrote (as the last of his Nine Laws of God in his book Out of Control): Change Changes Itself.

Or perhaps we should say: "Don't be surprised if change changes itself".

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