I want to tell you about one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life.
I created a website.
That might not sound like much but hang in there – there’s an important message I want to get across.
First a little background. I grew up in an age when web sites were only associated with spiders. And I have spent a long period of my life as a student. I am used to getting my head around modern languages, criminology, psychology, and philosophy.
But when I started a business, I had to hire people to make websites for me. I hadn’t learnt how to do that. So, in the end, I decided it was time to learn how to do it myself.
Now, many people know how to develop a website and now that I know how to do it, it’s relatively easy. But getting to relatively easy was a really hard road for me.
So, let me tell you how the process went; I will break it down into 3 parts.
YouTube is my friend. I learnt how to create a website from watching YouTube videos. But be careful: it’s not plain sailing. I found that many instructional videos show older versions of the CMS that the one I was working with. In such cases, instructor may tell you to do something you can’t do anymore. This is frustrating and time-consuming, but it’s far from the worst part.
Understanding the jargon
A more challenging hurdle is learning the lingo. There is a lot of jargon used in website creation and some online instructors don’t account for dummies who are unfamiliar with the right words. It becomes very confusing and you long for some plain English. I found this to be a barrier to learning. But again, not the hardest part.
Learning to think differently
By far the hardest challenge for me was learning how to think differently. I was not a website developer and I didn’t think like one. But I had to learn how to think like a website designer and an online marketer. For me, that was the hardest part of the entire process. Not because that kind of thinking was so difficult; but because it was so different to how I was thinking.
Just like change
Change is often like that. Learning the processes may not be that difficult, but changing your thinking is that difficult.
It was difficult for me to let go of my old ways of thinking. In fact, it was agony. And I blamed lots of people for it – all those YouTube gurus who couldn’t speak plain English and those two-year-old videos. But the truth was, the problem was with me.
If the hardest part of change is learning new processes, it’s not a very challenging change. The much bigger challenge is learning how to think differently. It’s letting go of old ways of thinking and being willing to start at the beginning. In this, I was a beginner and I needed to take baby steps.
And this is where I talk about change fitness because I so wanted to give up. When change becomes painfully difficult and you feel like quitting, it’s your change fitness that will keep you going – or not. Not if you don’t have enough.
For someone who works in the change business, it’s a good reminder of how difficult change can be. Even simple change, like creating a website. And how much harder when your job may be at stake!
Anyway, that’s my website story and I hope it helps in some way. Love to know what you think.
Written by Dr Steve Barlowa