Change readiness for church leadersDo you find the back-of-mind wheels turning through the holidays as you think about next year? I know I do. This countdown series will scan some ideas you may want to put in practice right away. Or, you might simply bookmark them for your Spring or Fall staff retreat.

The first idea is an adaptation from Tim Ferris. His influence in the personal productivity space came from the book, The Four Hour Work Week. One practice he encourages is to ask a member of the opposite sex for their phone number every day, in order to build confidence and initiative. This idea works okay for a single person with no moral compass! So, its not exactly a practical tip for ministry leaders. Yet, I really like the concept in theory.

While I write on innovation and change, frankly, there are many areas in life where I just get stuck. My dad used the old Trac II Gillette razors, and I did too. After about fifty razor improvements, I still use the oldest blades I can find (I think they are the ones I used in college!)  Depending on personality and life stage, we all have areas of our life that are change resistant, sometimes for good reasons and sometimes not.

As ministry leaders, we must not only learn to be comfortable with change, we must learn to initiate it. That's with this post is about.

What if there were low-risk ways to make yourself "change ready." What if you could build some appetite for doing things differently or flex some easy innovation muscle?

Here are 30 easy and simple practices to increase your change readiness.  If you were to tackle just four or five of these ideas, I bet you'll start approaching your work differently in 2014. Some of these ideas work great for a week or a month. So, pick the duration and give it a shot.

  1. Change how you shave; blades, shaving cream, etc. (Yes, I finally upgraded.)

  2. Take a different route in and out of your neighborhood or to work for a week.

  3. Order something at Starbucks (or your hangout) that you have never ordered before.

  4. Plan to go to a different church conference this year.

  5. Ask several people to recommend a new album. Buy one and listen to it straight through.

  6. Take a family member or friend to a yogurt shop and order a new flavor or topping.

  7. Grab a newspaper or magazine that you have noticed but never read.

  8. Change the brand of your most regular beverage for a week.

  9. Use a different version of the Bible for a month.

  10. Try an alternative app for one of your regular go-to apps.

  11. Change your toothpaste or toothbrush stiffness for a month.

  12. If you love fiction, read non-fiction or vice-versa for the next book.

  13. Go to a different gas station for month.

  14. Change how or where you store your Christmas decorations.

  15. Try a new box of cereal that you have never tried before.

  16. Buy your spouse a gift that you would typically never buy, "just because."

  17. Go for a walk around your neighborhood on a different route or path than normal.

  18. Watch a completely new TV show or different news channel for a season.

  19. Listen to a sermon for a pastor you keep hearing about.

  20. Pick a subject to learn about and visit the top 20 pages on Google search.

  21. Change the time you wake up or go to sleep (or how you wake up).

  22. Visit an unfamiliar non-profit in your city and learn a little bit about it.

  23. Look for a need in your sphere of influence and be extravagant in a different way.

  24. Call a pastor from a church you respect and ask about what's working best for them.

  25. Change the order of a typical pattern in your worship service.

  26. Eat a breakfast food for dinner that you have never eaten before for dinner.

  27. Take your shoes off for a long time in a place you typically wouldn't.

  28. Change the pencil, pen, stylus or notebook (physical or digital) that you typically use.

  29. Donate everything you have in the closet that you will probably never wear.

  30. Change the days or pattern of your workout.


  1. Wear that crazy Christmas sweater or that gift you couldn't wait to take back.

  2. Cheer for the Texans for at least one game.

Let me know how you practicing goes!!!
Topics: Date: Dec 22, 2013 Tags: