Making Change: If you want to your life to be different than it is right now, first you have to change. Easy peasy, right? You don’t like the way your life is going so you decide to make a few changes, But, dealing with change isn’t easy. In fact, it’s often your inability to successfully deal with change that creates the biggest barrier to your success. The key to making change work is understanding it.
The Key to making change work is to understand it
Making Change-Kick The Habit
In his wonderful book; “The Power of Habit“, Charles Duhigg explains that habit accounts of much of what we do every day and when we understand how a habit is created, we have a better chance of creating a routine or behaviour that can help us to make a change successfully.
Making Change: Habits are made up of three parts
Part One: Cue Routine/Behavior Reward
Once you understand what triggers a habit (the cue) and the reward you get from doing it, you can get to work on the routine that you use to attain that reward.
So for example, if one of the changes you want to make is to be more productive, and you find that one of the blockers to being productive is the amount of time you spend on social media, you can look at what the trigger is for you to go on social media:
Is it because you are bored?
Does something pop into your head and you want to find out about it now?
Learning what triggers your behavior helpful. When you learn to recognize the trigger, you can see at what point you subconsciously make the decision to follow that behavior. This gives you the power to come off auto pilot and change that decision to create a more productive behavior or routine that will create the same reward.
“I’m bored, is there something else (more productive) that I can do now, other than get lost on social media?
“Oh, I wonder what X is doing now? I’ll spend another twenty minutes on this, set a reminder on my phone, and then I’ll find out”.
The reward remains the same, but the behavior changes, thus achieving the reward. Choosing the right decision and doing it consistently helps it to develop into a habit. As with everything, people are different, so while this is a useful framework, it’s vital to spend the time to figure out what the triggers and rewards are for you so you can formulate your personal plan of action for success.
Part Two-Challenge the Resistance
A key factor in making change work for you is knowing what to expect. Resistance can be a key blocker to change and it comes from you.
Do you say things like:
“You know you’ll never be able to do this right?”
This has never worked before…what makes you think it’ll work now?”
Resistance draws on the self limiting beliefs that hide away in your subconscious, ready to show up any time the status quo is being challenged. Its main goal is usually to hold you back. It can manifest itself very strongly, in the form of stress, anxiety or physical ailments such as headaches or digestive problems, so you need to be careful of it.
The trick here is to know it, understand it and label it. For me, resistance comes in the form of backache and neck ache, leading to headaches. It cleverly piggybacks on an existing condition that I have with my neck/back so it’s almost like a Trojan horse sneaking past the gate keeper! Recognizing your “trojan horse” is the first step to being able to manage it. Whether it’s a physical, mental or emotional ailment, be mindful of it and see it for what it is; a tactic to keep you right where you are; in your comfort zone, afraid to change, powerless to thrive.
Once you discover your resistance, acknowledge it, question it and use your defense tactics to counteract it. When you see resistance show up, ask myself questions like:
“What am I afraid of?”
“Why am I feeling this way?”
“How is it serving me to resist like this?”
Part Three: Take time To Do Things That Empower You
These might include using essential oils, regular meditation or getting out for a walk in nature. It’s your way of saying; “Resistance, I know you’re there, but this change is good for me. I need this. I have to say “no” to you so I can keep moving forward” For good measure, it’s always useful to throw in some positive self talk to really drive it home: “I believe in me” or “I am confident, strong and determined” Positive Self Talk will negate those deep-rooted beliefs that regularly whisper in the back of your mind when the going gets tough; “You’re not good enough” “You don’t deserve it”, “You can’t do this”.
Mind your language
What many people don’t realize is that the gap that often exists between our success or failure is the language we use with both ourselves and others. If you find yourself in that unfortunate place of blaming others, complaining about why this is happening and being angry that this always happens to you…flip it by asking yourself;
“What good are you doing for yourself by complaining?”
The answer is usually…..
In fact, by wallowing in this negative talk, we often feel worse than before so a great success tip is to take this energy and focus away from the negative talk and channel it to feed the positivity and grit needed to overcome the challenges of change. Think solutions;
“What do I need to do to overcome this challenge?”
“Who do I need to ask for support?”
When you create the right habits, get your defenses in place against resistance and use positive language to motivate and strengthen your mindset, you are well on your way to making positive change to help you thrive.
But you don’t need to wait until then….
One of the most powerful things you can do to bring about change is to visualize it working well for you. When you have that positive goal or intention, fueled with energy and focus, when you can see it clearly, the result seems within your reach and it feels like you’re thriving already. Think about the positive change you want to make. Take a few minutes out to get crystal clear on how it looks, feels, sounds, tastes, smells. Feel the moment, as if you’ve already come through change, you’re on the other side and it’s working out amazingly well. You feel calm and at peace because you’ve achieved the result you wanted to achieve.
You feel success, euphoria and are satisfied in the knowledge that;
You are enough. You deserve this. You can do this!