Resistance to change is a common phenomenon that affects individuals in our personal and professional lives. Despite the benefits that change can bring, we often find it challenging to embrace new ideas, habits, or practices.
This resistance to change can be attributed to a variety of factors, including fear of the unknown, a preference for the familiar, and a desire to maintain the status quo. As a result, as individuals we resist change in various aspects of our lives, from trying new foods to adopting new technologies or changing careers.
The following story of seat belts exemplifies how change, despite being a constant aspect of life, often takes a long time to integrate into our daily routines.
Thirty-seven thousand Americans died in car accidents in 1955, six times today’s rate adjusted for miles driven.
Ford began offering seat belts in every model that year. It was a $27 upgrade, equivalent to about $190 today. Research showed they reduced traffic fatalities by nearly 70%.
But only 2% of customers opted for the upgrade. Ninety-eight percent of buyers chose to remain at the mercy of inertia.
Things eventually changed, but it took decades. Seatbelt usage was still under 15% in the early 1980s. It didn’t exceed 80% until the early 2000s – almost half a century after Ford offered them in all cars.
It’s easy to underestimate how social norms stall change, even when the change is an obvious improvement. One of the strongest forces in the world is the urge to keep doing things as you’ve always done them, because people don’t like to be told they’ve been doing things wrong. Change eventually comes, but agonizingly slower than you might assume.Source here