Have you struggled with change in your life?

My thoughts on initiating change and taking control of your life.

The process of change can be a long one, over the years of talking to people about wanting to change, and what has brought them to the point of taking action, the majority have sat on the decision to make change for over 18 months just to get to the point of starting to google the information required.
Sometimes we see our goal as a big overwhelming ball of anxiety that completely consumes us. Sometimes it freezes us taking no action and then depressing us because of missed opportunity.
Making the decision to change is often challenging because it means that first of all, we have realised that whatever we are doing is not good enough, it is not what we wanted, or that we have completely lost focus on what is important in the glitter and glamour of life. It is hard to look at your life and where you have been focusing and seeing that you have been making decisions that aren’t helping you actually take action and step forward towards your goals in life. It is easier to tolerate the pain that you have than admit that you may need some help. Somewhere in all our lives, we were told that it’s not OK to ask for help. This can be because you don’t want to be wrong, this may be because you don’t want to inconvenience someone or be ridiculed because it is something you should’ve known. Whatever it is, eventually if we want to change we will need to take a big deep breath put our ego aside and raise our hand.
Change is uncomfortable, it means we may have to learn something new, we may have to meet new people, we may have to stop doing things we like, and we may have to stop spending time with people that we like that are holding us back. Sometimes, almost all the time it is easier not to change.
Change is required for us to achieve anything and is normally catapulted into the spotlight because whatever we are tolerating has escalated to a point where it hurts so much you just can’t fight it anymore. This may be you are finally so completely broke that you can’t pay the bills and you are about to lose your house, it may be that your health has declined so much that the doctor has given you an ultimatum, it might be that you realise that the kids have turned 6 and you are too unfit to play with them anymore, It may be that you have been tormented in public or trolled on social media, it may be that you have finally come up for air and realised that you can’t see land anymore. Change seems to happen more often than not at breaking point instead of when it really needs to happen which is when you realise that things are going a little south the first time.
As a coach and trainer change consumes my life. From learning the process of how to implement successful change, talking to people about the benefits and the costs of changing, the things in my life that I am trying to change, learning how to talk to people to trigger change for them, watching the world not wait but continual change around me at what seems to be at an accelerating rate.
I was once told that “change happens in an instant” by a good friend and mentor. When I first heard this I listened but didn’t understand it. I have been mindful of this line every day of my life since and do you know what? He was right. We as people spend a long time thinking about doing something from quitting smoking to going on holidays but it seems there is always a singular magical moment we flick the switch from “why I can’t” to “how can I” thinking. From then change happens, the brain seems to completely rewire and you stop moving backwards and start moving forwards.
Once you are mindful of this I believe change can be a lot smoother. Taking action can be a lot easier. Every day I am stuck and the majority of the time I can get a little bit of traction just from asking that “how can I?” question.
Two questions that I learnt to ask recently which I found to be really impactful:
  • What is {insert what you need to change} costing you, and the people you love, now and in the future? 
  • Are you prepared to continue to be responsible for that cost? 
For example,  What is not losing weight costing you, the people you love now and in the future?
The answer to this typically goes like this;
I have less energy – this means mood swings and poor relationships with the people around me because of the choices I make, it means not having the energy to achieve other goals and dreams in my life.
I feel self-conscious -this causes me anxiety, depression, and sadness and prevents me from making friendships and taking the kids out.
My health is poor – this will cost me years of my life, less time with my family, I won’t see the grandkids, I
will leave everyone to pick up my mess as I pass early, my quality of life will be way down and I will probably not be healthy enough to achieve my dreams
Have you noticed this has nothing to do with looking good? It never does not really.
Then my favourite part
Are you prepared to be responsible for the cost?
If you are good that perfectly fine (no ninja moves here it is your life and it is okay)
if you are not maybe it’s time to change. Maybe you have found a way to stop tolerating the pain before it gets to a catastrophic point, and the decision is no longer in your hands.
These questions can be applied to everything you want to change and are questions I am asking myself more and more recently.
I do not want change to be easy, I do want to be better. I want to leave this world one day knowing that I had a positive impact on the world around me, and that I left it in a better place than when I entered it.
If I can tolerate everything that has held me back from the changes I wanted I surely have the small amount of strength required to flick that switch, ask for help and take action moving forward.
I encourage you to take action with me, and join me in the fight to take control of your life.