Change is constant. The world waits for no one. We don’t live in a vacuum and that means change is happening all around us, all the time. Intentional change, evolutionary change, spiritual change, aging, accidents, accomplishments – all the time.
But why is it that most people resist change? Babies hate changes in their routine. Adults? Well, they’re not much different. But every day you’re one day older. Without your consent, you’ve changed, but is it for the better?
Most people fear change. The world can get pretty complicated. Once we find someone we like we hold on for dear life to keep it . If we lose hold then we need to find something new… and that’s scary. What if this is the best it will ever get? What if I forgot how? What if….
Few embrace change as an adult. As a child we all embraced change for a period. It’s a magical time where everything is new, everything is different, everything is change. And it is good. Where does the magic go?
Well, I’ve got a revelation. Change doesn’t have to be that hard it just needs to be a way of life. The more you fight it, the more it hurts when you lose control and it is forced upon you.
How To Change?
It’s easier than you think. It must be easy or it won’t stick. Like any skill, this must be learned. And practiced. So start small. So pick a goal, any goal, and walk through this little excercise to define the CHANGE you’re about to undertake. Once you’ve made that change permanent then you can move to another. One thing at a time… be patient!
So How I start?
First and foremost, you must decide you WILL do this. Really decide. Something you can really believe in. But sometimes, it’s hard to pick. So here’s a little exercise to pick ONE goal.
Yup. Get some paper and put a pen to it. Write your goal down. Keep revising it each step below. Write it again, even if it requires no change. There’s something magical that happens when you put pen to paper when it comes to goals. Just do it!
So if you’re not sure what you want to change, just write down everything you can think of.
- Cross off the things outside of your control
- Cross off the things that would be “nice” but really aren’t that important
- Cross off everything that doesn’t inspire you
- Of what is left, just pick one. Any one. You can’t pick wrong. Remember, you can always come back to this list
OK, now let’s start.
On a clean sheet of paper write down your goal at the top. Ask your self these things, write ’em down. This is how you change your goal into something ACTIONABLE.
- It must be simple. The more complicated it is the less likely it will happen. At most one sentence. Rewrite your goal, as simply as possible.
It must be time based. Change doesn’t happen overnight. This needs to be at LEAST 6 weeks but not so long it’s too far out to seem “real”. Consider 6-12 week intervals. Remember, after that, you can have another goal!
It must be specific. Just saying “I want to lose weight” is not specific. Saying “I want to lose 3lbs” is.
It must be realistic. Put a reality check on it. Remember, we’re going for something that is simple and easy. We want success. If you weigh 200lbs saying you want to lose 100lbs is NOT realistic. Wanting to improve your tan, but you like in Alaska in the winter in an igloo, that’s not going to cut it.
It must have steps. If not, how will you get there? Break it down into some bite size pieces that are, by themselves, no big deal.
NOW time to start….
START. Yup. Right now. Not when the “time is better”.
Make it public. That’s right. You need an accountability partner or partners. You need someone who will ask you “So, how’s it going with X” and not put you down, not sabotage your success, but instead support. Pick someone. Be their accountability partner for their goal. Make it a team effort. Read this post on Social Support.
Make it visual. Put reminders around the house, on your mirror, fridge, door, phone, etc.
Automate it. Maybe a reminder in your work calendar? Asking yourself if you’ve done what you needed to do to get there today?
Set a countdown. In the age of Smart Phones there are many countdown apps. Try one. Unless it stresses it, in which case delete that sucker pronto!
START. Did I mention that? Yup. It’s time. GO!
What do you do to deal with change? Post your comments below and share!