How to Overcome Obstacles to Change
“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one that has opened for us.” – Alexander Graham Bell
The nature of our world is that there is opposition to nearly all that we do. Otherwise, there would be nothing to choose.
Often we find the opposition is playing out within ourselves.
Either you can act or you can allow outside forces to act on you. You have the power to choose. You do not always have the power to choose your circumstances, but you do have the power to choose your response.
You are responsible for the choices you make and the consequences they bring. Given the power of choice, you have the privilege of setting your own course, solving your own problems and taking care of yourself and your family. Whenever you face any situation, there is a space to be found between the situation and your response to it. That space is where you can engage in your moment of choice.
If you are internally controlled, you exercise your inborn freedom and this space expands, giving you more ability to make the choice that is right for you.
People who are externally controlled, allow others or circumstances to control them. The space will then stay the same or even constrict. The space becomes so small, they react automatically and not always for the best, rather than expanding the space to consider better alternatives. Some people do not want to let go; they keep the space small and continue to make their own lives miserable while blaming others for their misery.
The Internally Centered Person
Your center of control is what drives your life. If your center is Internal, you believe that you are responsible for your thoughts, feelings, words and actions. You believe that “you” make yourself feel, think or act. People who are successful in achieving their vision or purpose center internally. They believe that their lives will get better when they change their thoughts, feelings, words or actions.
Internally centered people set goals, accept victory and defeat and look for solutions they can accomplish. Gandhi is an example of someone who was internally centered. He believed that in order to change the world, he first needed to change himself.
The externally Centered Person
Externally centered people rely on other people or circumstances to determine their thoughts, feelings, and actions. They believe that other people or circumstances can make them feel, think, say or act. People who are unsuccessful in achieving their vision or purpose center externally. They believe that their lives will get better only if other people change or circumstances change.
When you focus on people, places, and things outside yourself and blame others for your problems, you set yourself up for misery. People often condemn in others those characteristics they hate in themselves. The thing they wish would change in others is usually something they dislike about themselves. It takes self-examination to become aware of this.
When you continue to hold yourself hostage by focusing on what you think other people should change instead of the changes you need to make within yourself, you lose the freedom to act in your best interest. This leads to resentment, which is the poison you take expecting the other person to die.
This is the first of a 2-part series on how you can overcome obstacles that prevent you from changing. In our next article we’ll talk about the things you can control and the things you can’t.
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 me, I will help you understand how to make those changes.