The More Things Stay the Same the More They Change


“No sense in complaining because nothing ever changes.”

I heard in a conversation the other day. At first I thought it was at just some harmless, despondent fatalism. A “That’s life” kind of quip.

Then I thought, that’s just wrong. Wrong in the “not a very positive or helpful attitude” wrong, but also wrong in the “nothing ever changes” category.

Not to put myself in the overly optimistic, Pollyanna, motivational speaker arena, because that can be pretty annoying. But believing that things can’t change is a pretty good way to put some barriers up to it happening, whether that is in your own life or in society or at work or wherever. Not that you can’t be fatalistic and still be the beneficiary of some good luck that changes thing for the better. Luck is good.

I know. It’s easy to become jaded and cynical and fatalistic with experience. You see the thing you want to change as a minefield and you see the minefield so well and see so many booby traps that the logical conclusion is to not try to cross the minefield at all. We’ll come back to this.


Back to the “nothing ever changes” quip. That’s crap. Things are changing all the time. In fact things now change at a pace that’s staggering. So it’s not whether it will change but how quickly and to what.

Now, I might have a hard time with arguing the idea of human nature changing. People are capable of changing but often don’t. I suspect we’ll continue to be motivated by some very basic emotions (love, fear, anger, sadness, joy, etc.).

I might argue though that maybe our basic driving emotions manifest themselves differently in the ever changing social, technical, cultural environments they must exist in. It’s like a chemical reaction. Different chemicals. Different reaction. Like Papa John’s.

Back to the minefield. Say the minefield is the environment you need to interact with. The minefield is then ever changing. So your vision of what the minefield looks like 100 yards out will more than likely be wrong by the time you get there.

So take your minesweeper and scan that first step. Take the first step. Now look around again. The minefield looks different because you have moved. In fact as you are standing there a squirrel runs across the minefield and gets blown up.  I guess you don’t need to worry about that mine. In fact you never needed to worry about it. Just worry about the next step. Change the world one step at a time, one action at a time, one interaction at a time.

I guess there is no sense in complaining.

About joegergen

To evoke a smile. That's all. Author of "Methane Wars: A Fable" and "Lear's Fool" as well as various poems and some these painting things as well.
This entry was posted in Freedom and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to The More Things Stay the Same the More They Change

  1. danycawallis says:

    I love how you pointed out that we seem to be motivated by things, yet a lot of the time I don’t think we realize that sometimes those things are what made I change in the first place and also what will drive us to change either back or into something better.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.