What Does It Take to Change Your Life?
Can you change your life?
“That depends on you!”
I agree with what Holocaust survivor Victor Frankl said about freedom and choice: “One last freedom that they cannot take away from me is the freedom to choose how I will respond to situations of which I have little or no control, not matter how bad the situation.”
Creating change from the inside out requires that you learn all you can about yourself and then work to make the required change happen. It requires that you know who you are and what is important to you. You live your life in such a way that others feel your influence for good. You positively affect your family and community. Planned, positive change takes place where there is mutual trust and…
- You have positive and realistic expectations
- You communicate these expectations so that others understand
- You build bridges of understanding and trust as you clarify these expectations
- You then act of your own free will to make change happen. You have the right to make choices, as well as the obligation to be held accountable for those choices.
Change Begins With You
If you want to change the world, you first must change yourself. True commitment to change implies that you choose to change without being compelled to change by others or your circumstances. You willingly engage yourself to follow your dream without compulsion.
Change from the inside out starts with discovering who you are and what is important to you. It is not about what other people think you need to change. Nor is it about what you think other people want. It is about what drives you internally. While it is important to accept feedback and correction from others, your commitment to change must be internally driven if you are to achieve positive, lasting change.
Change because you “should”
Some people operate on “shoulds”. These people are externally driven, possessing a low level of commitment. Some wait to decide or to act until external pressure moves them in the direction they need to go. The may be temporally committed as long as the the pressure is there. However, when the pressure is off,their commitment is off.
People who experience legal, financial or relationship problems often fall into this category. This is sometimes true as well for people whose desire for change is driven by health problems they have created by living an unhealthy lifestyle. They may be temporally committed to quit smoking or begin exercising. External pressure sometimes works. However, to achieve permanent change there must be an internal commitment.
True internal commitment to change implies that you choose to change without being compelled to change by others or your circumstances.
- You urgently engage yourself in following your dream without compulsion.
- As a consciously committed person, you are values-driven.
- You are accountable to yourself and others.
- You choose to follow those who support your worthwhile goals.
- You admire and respect people who exemplify high quality, but do not compare yourself with them.
Quality takes time and consistent effort to achieve. Very few people have achievements or material gain handed to them; when they do, they often lack the character to use them wisely.
Peach the Cow
You come to know in what direction to go as you pay attention to your inner voice.
I grew up on a farm in southeastern Idaho. We had a called Peach because of her peach color. In spite of her sweet name, she was aggressive and she would dominate the rest of the herd. She was also our best milk producer.
I was about nine years old when, one dark night, we brought the cows in for milking, but Peach was not with them. Dad sent me back out to the pasture to find her. Looking and not finding her, I prayed that I would. I remember hearing a voice inside me say “Go back to the barn.” I was afraid to return without Peach, so I kept looking.
I decided to look around the canal. In the process, I stumbled and fell in. I became angry and this only made matters worse. Again, the voice inside me said, “Go back to the barn.”
After resisting a while longer, I finally gave up and returned to the barn. Dad said, “Where in the h— have you been?”
I said, “Looking for Peach.”
He said, “She came in right after you left. Didn’t you see her?”
The lesson I learned and now share with you is, “Pay attention to your inner voice.” Listen closely to the messages your heart, mind and spirit give you, and you will find positive self-direction that will put you on the path to success. Your inner voice gives you the edge that makes the difference when you decide to change your life.
You may have heard of the “purple cow’ – the quality that makes a business stand out among its competitors. I like to refer to the “peach cow”. My mission involves enabling personal change in part by helping individuals discover their unique gifts. Your peach cow is what distinguishes you from everyone else.
Your inner voice can help you find your peach cow.
I wrote the following poem that describes my journey in finding my peach cow.
I never saw my peach cow
When I went out to find her,
And something I have learned now
Is that I was looking way behind her.
This is an excerpt from my book “Embracing Change From the Inside Out”
If you’re ready to make life changes from the inside out contact Joe, he will help you understand how to make those changes.