Change Futures Executive Director Julie Aganoff shares her thoughts on some things we need to focus on – every day.
16 October 2020
What business are we in?
with Julie Aganoff
“We help people who want to make changes in their lives.”
What business are we in? How do we know if we are being effective? Change Futures Executive Director Julie Aganoff gave us her thoughts about the role we all play – every single day.
Julie: Our job is to help people who want to change their lives, which in reality is their future. It‘s the name of our organisation. It’s our goal and our mission.
If someone asks you ‘What do we do at work?’ – the answer is ‘We help people who want to make changes in their lives.’
But just as important about knowing what we do is understanding the way we do it.
Here’s how I think about what we need to achieve every day.
The future is an open book. It’s the next five minutes. It’s today. It’s tomorrow morning.
Everything we do with the person in the room is seeking to understand them and their current circumstances, and the changes they want to make.
They don’t always know what future they want to create for themselves, but they do know what they want to be different now. We explore what is going to create a better future. And that’s something they are going to have to define and visualise for themselves – with our support. It has to be their vision – not ours.
The changes that will lead to a different future might be – not feeling suicidal, being able to get out of bed, being able to get a job, not feeling miserable all the time, being able to get into a lift without having a panic attack, not be constantly scared. Whatever it is -they are looking for a future without that suffering.
Heal the Past
The way we alleviate that suffering is by listening to them and seeking to understand how their experiences in life have influenced their thoughts, their values, attitudes and beliefs. We then work with them to help heal the pain that often accompanies that past as much as possible.
Live in the Present
Certainly, that is an ongoing journey. But when you start to heal the past – you start to make it easier for people to live more comfortably in the present. And if you live with less fear in the present, you will change the future.
Change the Future
A human being is the culmination of their innate qualities and personality and the impact of every experience they have had in their lives. So, when they come into this room, they bring everything with them. That’s who they are. The life they live in the present is shaped by the past.
By healing the past as much as possible, people learn how to live in the present which absolutely changes their future in a positive way.
One Clear Goal
So, with everyone who we visit or who visits us, our job and our goal is to help empower them to heal their past, live in the present and in doing so – change their future for the better.
And that is our business and our goal and our mission – Change Futures.
Our thanks to Julie Aganoff for the story and the photo.