Change is not easy
- Published: Monday, 23 November 2015 19:36
'Change is not easy.' This is a statement that few would disagree with. Yet, the effort, endurance, and discipline required is so often under-estimated.
It may be that we wish change were easier, or that we had greater power to overcome the barriers.
Yet there is something that is so fundamentally comfortable, organizing, natural, and simple about habit. Across this board, this is true, from parenting, to diet, to coping with stress, etc. While we often know what we could do better, shifting habits to accommodate this requires CONSIDERABLE time, effort, and persistence.
It is estimated that 80-90% of our actions occur without our minds consciously thinking about it. If we had to actually 'consciously think' about everything that we attend and respond to in daily life, it would be stifling. Our brains are so smart by consolidating information into routines and expectations; in doing so, we don't have to re-invent the wheel at every turn, and as a result are capable of accomplishing so much more.
While this is so adaptive in so many ways, it is also what makes change so arduous. When we attempt to go about something differently, we have to think so much more. And sometimes this thinking is painful, as we reflect on why we do what we do. Often the initial steps are much less comfortable. Although we may start to see good things evolve, the pull is always there to return to what is innate and natural.
To embrace change is brave and worthy of admiration. This can bring about growth, and many good things. But it 'is not easy.' When you set out to make a positive change in your life, be patient and kind with yourself. Recognize the difficulty of what you are trying to do, at times of failure. When you find yourself inevitable falling back into old patterns, take steps to re-engage with your goal. And seek out help and support in the process - it is an invaluable part!