The Cycle of Change
Some time ago, I overheard the following terms and felt they applied fantastically to the journey of developing new skills.
Uninformed optimism – Informed pessimism – Informed optimism
After some research, I learnt these formed part of “Kelley and Conner’s Emotional Cycle of Change”, a model developed by Don Kelley and Daryl Conner to describe the emotional stages most people go through during voluntary change.
Stage 1: Uninformed optimism
Energised, excited and full of nervous energy, you focus on doing rather than thinking of the potential difficulties coming your way.
Stage 2: Informed pessimism
Unforeseen challenges make you anxious about your ability to meet your ideals. Feelings of fear, nervousness and frustration begin to set in. This is the stage where many people quit.
Stage 3: Hopeful realism
Pushing past doubt, pessimism begins to decline. You still feel anxious, but are able to solve problems now the situation is familiar.
Stage 4: Informed optimism
You feel confident you’re making the right choices. Looking through more experienced eyes you are less anxious about any problems.
Stage 5: Completion
Satisfaction comes with having worked through the problems and developed the new skill.
By recognising there is a consistent pattern I’m better prepared to deal with the ups and downs. I just have to remember to hold on and enjoy the ride!