Managing Personal Change

When we decide we need to pursue a goal in our life as a way to manage personal change, it’s generally for one of three reasons:

  1. We want to accomplish something in an area we’ve never worked on before
  2. We haven’t started because we weren’t sure exactly what to do
  3. We tried and failed, so we quit trying.

These reasons basically fall into two categories we can focus on:

  1. Changing how we think, and
  2. Changing what we do

Thinking

A little self-reflection will usually reveal whether the mental side (your thinking) is holding you back.   Are you not sure what to do, i.e. you need to learn something?   Do you need to increase your knowledge in an area you’ve never thought about much before?   When you think  about working on the goal (e.g. weight loss), do you have the flawed/negative beliefs that say “I can’t do it”, “it’s too hard” or “I’m not sure where to start”?

These are all thinking issues.   Thanks to the internet they’re pretty easy to solve, as there are experts for any subject you can think of with blogs, books, videos, PDF ebooks, etc. to help guide you, or you can always hire a personal trainer, coach or other expert for guidance.   Getting better information to correct or improve our thought processes may be just what you need to start making progress.

Doing

If your self-examination reveals that you have an idea what to do or how you would proceed, but you just don’t do it, that’s a “doing” problem.   At some point, we’ve learned how to proceed, decided it’s OK to try and fail, etc. and we just need to get started.

“Action speaks louder than words, just not nearly as often”.   ~Mark Twain

If failure to take action is holding you back, I encourage you to read Steven Pressfield’s Turning Pro.  It’s not about ‘pro’ as in getting paid for your work, it’s about living your life like a professional, showing up every day and putting in the effort even when it’s not your best. It’s a great read by a great author, and reminds us that if we are ever to fulfill our potential, we must be willing to do the work.

Awareness

As you go through your day, try to ask yourself these two questions relative to your goal:

  1. Am I thinking like I should be thinking?
  2. Am I doing what I should be doing?

When you can consistently produce the desired answer to those two questions, I’d hazard a guess that you’ll be on your way to reaching your goal.

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