Can You Make a Personal Change? It’s Your Choice
“To turn a dream into a reality, it all begins with a decision.” – T.J. Hoisington – If You Think You Can
What do you want to change in your life?
Personal change is a choice. One of the greatest gifts we have is the freedom to choose. Yet, when it comes to change, many people wage an internal battle. Most people want to make some changes in their lives, yet they resist and fight the change. Some do not want to make the effort; others are willing, but they allow others to convince them that they cannot change.
When you choose to change, your choice needs to take advantage of the combined power of your body, mind, heart and spirit. As you leverage the power of body, mind, heart and spirit, you will break away from negative influences and free yourself to change by choice.
Personal growth is a result of planned change on a personal level. You choose the changes you want to make. You can and should receive input from people you trust, but you make the final decision. You also accept full responsibility for the outcome of your choice.
Before you can choose to change, it is helpful to first examine what you believe has influenced you to be where you are today.
The main influences on what you believe about yourself, about others and about the situation are:
- Early childhood experiences
- The messages you received as a child
- The messages you receive from others today
- Self-talk – the messages you continue to give yourself
Consider what you like about who you are now, and what you would like to change.
Now what are you willing to do to change?
Begin by assessing your strengths, weaknesses, challenges, and opportunities.
- What do you do well and how can you improve?
- What activities and habits do you need to remove or change?
- What challenges do you have that you need to address?
- What opportunities do you have that you need to grasp?
Change is a Choice, Change is Hard
While I have described change as a choice, I know that change is also hard. It takes place slowly, especially at first.
As a child, you were likely creative and uninhibited. Unfortunately, much of our social programming discourages such creativity. Many adults have lost the creativity they received at birth. It is important to dream and to dream big. However, without solid planning and hard work these dreams do not materialize. Even though you may have received many discounting messages, you also may have had helpful experiences. Some of these experiences leave you with a lesson that, if you choose to remember and learn from it, will help you succeed.
I recall a lesson gained from an experience when I was about 12 years old. In order to get water to our field, it was necessary to clean out the irrigation ditch so that water could flow smoothly to its destination. We did it the old fashioned way, with a shovel.
We began at the end and worked our way to the top, about two miles upstream. As I shoveled alongside my dad, I noticed that the amount of water flowing in the ditch would gradually increase.
We worked for about three hours in the summer heat. As we were nearing the top, it was past time for our noon meal. I was hungry and I knew Mother would be expecting us to come and eat. I noticed there was twice as much water flowing as there had been when we started. Dad said we needed to finish and he asked me to watch the water closely.
During the last fifteen minutes of work, the amount of water flowing actually tripled. The lesson learned? The most significant results come from your last effort.
I encourage you to persevere. When you start this process, it will seem difficult. You may want to give up, but remember that the flow of change will build gradually from a trickle to a free flowing stream – but you must make the effort.
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 am a personal change coach and will help you understand how to make those changes.
You can also contact me to speak at your next event, I will adjust my topic to the needs of your audience.