We live in a world in flux, but the word “flux” is also a verb, and an ability we can all develop to help us navigate the profound changes we’re living through.
Flux: 8 Superpowers for Thriving in Constant Change by April Rinne, Berrett-Koehler
When you lose someone you love, someone close to you, it is as if time speeds up and stops all at once. You’re simultaneously hurtled into an unknowable future and stuck in the grief of the present moment. April Rinne knows this feeling intimately. In the introduction to her new book, she shares the experience of losing her parents to a car accident in 1994—how everything changed in her life at that moment while at the same time being “suspended in the unknown, not really knowing what to do next.”
Looking at the world today, she recognizes those same feelings in society at large as the pandemic drags (perhaps even rages) on, the climate warms up, social tensions rise, work never ends, and both the economy and political stability seem teetering on an edge.
Rinne writes about the essential paradox of our moment:
In some ways, life is unfolding at warp speed. […] Yet in other ways, it’s as though the world is standing still: paralyzed, unsure of what to do or what comes next. And it’s not just the world: you feel stuck, and perhaps angry, frustrated, anxious, and in limbo, too.
The old army adage of “hurry up and wait” doesn’t quite apply here, because we are not idle. It is more like we’re on a treadmill that keeps speeding up, moving our legs ever faster trying to keep up while remaining in one place. We live in a world in flux, but the word “flux” is also a verb, and an ability we can all develop to help us navigate the profound changes we’re living through. Because of that, Rinne’s new book, Flux, takes a different approach to change than most others:
It is not a book about “change management,” nor one “kind” of change. Rather, it is about how to think about and relate to change, period.
It is a book about grounding yourself in core values, and “your personal relationship to change,” and how to bring it into your organization. It describes how to develop a Flux Mindset and develop what she believes are the eight Flux Superpowers: to Run Slower, See What’s Invisible, Get Lost, Start with Trust, Know Your “Enough,” Create Your Portfolio Career, Be All the More Human (and Serve Other Humans), and Let Go of the Future. Rinne devotes a chapter to each, and with them, you may not be able to predict the future, but you’ll be better at creating your own.