Articles 4 min read

Why is it so difficult for humans to change? by Agnesia Agrella

Last week I asked I shared:

“Change is natural and in nature all living entities change or transform naturally without resisting or questioning. Life happens, and what happens is something called change. Some changes are the result of biology and the passage of time, within the natural cycle or order of things. Nature can change all by herself without the hand of man. If change is a natural event why is change so difficult for humans?”

For me, the difference between humans and all other living creatures is our ability to choose how we live. We all have a choice whether we want to live in survival or creation.

 We have the ability to choose our lives. I know this have many different dimensions and it brings the debate about nurture against nature. But fundamentally we can choose who we want to be and science is now proofing that we can influence our bodies through the choices we make.

The one question that always fascinated me is why do some people have certain illness and why do some people achieve amazing results and others don’t? 

I had the privilege of working with Stacy Smith better known as Unstoppable Tracy. 

Tracy is challenging misconceptions about uncertainty – You would never know it the way she gracefully walks into the room that Tracy was born a 4-way amputee. 

She has exemplified extraordinary leadership, dedication, and excellence in sports for athletes with disabilities and without around the world. 

This remarkable woman has shown me how much further I can go if I choose to be the best I can be. 

I have watched Amy Purdy participate in dancing with the starts and what makes this special is that at age 19, she contracted Neisseria meningitides, a form of bacterial meningitis. The disease affected her circulatory system when the infection led to septic shock; both of her legs had to be amputated below the knee, she lost both kidneys, and her spleen had to be removed and yet today “Amy” is an American actress, model, para-snowboarder, motivational speaker, clothing designer and author. 

Amy is a 2014 Paralympic bronze medallist and 2018 Paralympics silver medallist.  The decisions the ladies made changed their lives and the people around the world they inspire.

Let’s look at the decisions that shaped the success of some amazing businesses!!

In 1914 Henry Ford announced that his company would pay auto workers $5 a day, doubling their wages overnight. One executive feared the decision would bankrupt the company.

In fact, it did the opposite. It’s often said that Ford doubled wages so that his workers could afford to buy Ford cars. That may have been a happy side-effect, but the real reason he thought $5 a day necessary was to stop so many of them quitting for an easier life.

For Ford’s continuous-motion production line to work efficiently, it needed experienced operatives. New staff had to be trained, creating delays. The Ford production line was a demanding place, and there were easier jobs elsewhere that paid similar wages. Ford’s $5 decision ensured that his best staff stayed put, and that his production line turned out cars at prices average Americans could afford. Henry Ford’s $5 decision kick-started the golden age of the automobile.

Apple buys a software company

In 1996 Apple was rotten. That year the company lost $816 million. It looked all but finished.

As a last gasp measure, CEO Gil Amelio persuaded the board that Apple needed to buy a software company, and the purchase of a business called NeXT was agreed. It was an inspired choice. NeXT software didn’t save Apple, but its founder – Steve Jobs – did. Jobs was well known to Apple, of course. He had co-founded that company too, back in 1976, before being forced out in 1985. By acquiring NeXT Apple brought Jobs back into the fold, along with his passion and entrepreneurial genius. Jobs soon became interim boss and later took on the role permanently, while Apple went on to revolutionise personal computing and mobile technology – and break records as the most valuable public company in history.

Intel gets Inside

In 1991 Intel came up with a simple brand slogan, “Intel Inside”, and revolutionised an industry.

Prior to 1991 hardly anyone knew the make or model of the microprocessor in their personal computer, and hardly anyone cared. That was a problem for Intel in a maturing market. It had designed a great new microchip, but it wasn’t selling because consumers were happy with computers driven by the old one.

So Intel had a dilemma. How do you make a computer component sexy? An Intel employee called Dennis Carter decided that PC users had to be made aware of the differences between one chip and another, which meant promoting microprocessors apart from the PCs that housed them.His decision led to “Intel Inside”, and a decisive shift in power from PC manufacturers to chip makers. Soon everybody wanted the latest Intel inside, even if they didn’t have a clue what a microprocessor did.

Lucas feels The Force

With his high school comedy American Graffiti making big bucks at the box office, young director George Lucas started pitching his next movie idea to studio bosses.

It didn’t go well. Executives didn’t really get the idea of a western set in space, and several turned him down. But Lucas was hot property and 20th Century Fox eventually agreed to make the movie. They offered him a fee of $500,000, three times more than the sum he’d earned for American Graffiti.

And in one of the best decisions in Hollywood business history, Lucas turned down the pay rise. Instead, he asked to retain licensing and merchandising rights to the film. In the 1970s movie merchandise was as rare as successful film sequels, so Fox readily agreed.

The film, of course, was Star Wars, which went on to become one of the most successful movies of all time and spawn a series that today appears immortal. At the same time, it ushered in a new age of movie tie-ins and merchandising. Lucas turned down $500,000, and is now reportedly worth nearly $5.5 billion.

Boeing drops a bombshell

In the post-war years Boeing was a profitable manufacturer of jet engine bombers for the US military. It really didn’t need to bet the farm on a hunch, but that’s what chief Bill Allen decided to do anyway. Boeing invested $185 million in the win-or-bust development of a civilian airliner called the Boeing 707.

Allen’s genius was to believe that consumers would pay for fast global air travel. He had the courage to bet the future of his company on that belief. The Boeing 707 would become an iconic aircraft, with over a thousand built for civilian use. Boeing, of course, remains one of the world’s largest civilian aircraft manufacturers.

What is your view on these remakable stories? What sets them apart? Do you think these individuals chose to live in survival or creation?

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