If you have something about yourself that you want to change, whether it's a personality trait or a physical one...like wanted to get in better shape or lose some weight...here are some useful tips I've found that might work for you.
Lots of humans think changing behaviors is hard work, that it takes time and lots of effort. For many of us, frogs included, change can be a frustrating experience. To makes things worse, we see ads on TV and in magazines that promise us quick results on just about everything. If you've ever tried any of these products and gadgets, I know you've been disappointment. They rarely work. If change was easy and quick, we wouldn't have such an aversion to it. When we try to change, and experience setbacks or failure, we are left feeling inadequate. This is why 90 percent of humans give up on their goal. Ninety percent. That's HUGE! The reality is, change is indeed hard and it does require time and effort. The good news is that there are ways to make change easier and help you garner the success you want.
Step 1. Clarity; What is it you want to do. Write it down. Be specific. Putting it down on paper (or your computer) builds commitment and hold you accountable. As you write, give some thought to how you want to accomplish this. How is your current behavior interfering with your goals? What need does this behavior fulfill in your life? The answer may lie in your past. If the need still exists, how will you satisfy it in a more empowering way?
Step 2. Vision; What will change look like? Now, envision your life after you've accomplished the change. What will you be doing? How will it feel? How will you interact with others and how will they interact with you? You may have to take a big leap into the future to see this, but it will be so worth it! Not only should you write down the answers to these questions, but also notice how you feel in your body. Do you feel happier, more relaxed, more exhilarated...perhaps more satisfied with your life?
Step 3. Challenges; What will you do if....We all need contingency plans. Dreams have a way of vaporizing once they brush up against an obstacle. The reason this happens, is because we haven't given any thought to the "what if's". When we take the time to look ahead and see the potential problems, then address how we'll overcome them, we can keep moving should we encounter them. Just the the Boy Scouts, we need to be prepared. Become a medic, armed with your own first-aid kit for whatever hits and bruises your dream might take. You probably wouldn't go hiking without a first aid kit, so why would take a journey of change without one?
Step 4. Consistency; How will you create positive habits? You've done most of the hard work by this point, so from here on in things should start getting easier. That's good news, right? Breaking down your goals into behaviors that you can repeat consistently will eventually take up little to no energy in your brain. Your old, unwanted habits become replaced with new ones that will better serve you. Dr. Roy Baumeister's research on
willpower, shows that the most successful people are the ones who establish positive habits (and get rid of the negative ones) so they can use their mental energy not to argue with themselves, but to make important decisions and to initiate significant changes.
Step 5. Transformation; How will you feel more competent? Some humans are hardwired to hang on to the negative, thus missing the positive things that happens. They say things like, "I only lost 5 pounds instead of the 10 that I was hoping to do." Losing 5 pounds is awesome! Savor the success. By taking the time to relish our accomplishments, and less time focusing on the negatives, we take these momentary states and embed them into our long-term memory. Making this a regular practice can go a long way in forming an empowering story of your life.
With this step in mind, I want to take a moment here to pat myself on the back. Today marks the two-year anniversary of this blog. When I first started writing it, I didn't think I'd last a month...maybe two...if I was lucky. And here I am at my two year mark. I hope you've enjoyed reading these blogs as much as I've enjoyed writing them. And I promise that I'll continue to write about inspiring and uplifting, educational, and maybe even funny things, for awhile longer. Have a great week! Peace.