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Negative emotions may trigger us to think about everything we’re not doing, or feel like we’re doing wrong, but they're ineffective for making changes that stick. Real change needs a positive platform to launch from; we need positive, self-edifying reasons for taking on the challenge.
Feeling overwhelmed by trying to change a behavior often makes us charge into change, and see failure as a sign of incapacity. But this straps us into a no-win situation because you are unlikely to sustain the initial momentum to change for long.
If we really want to change, one of the first things we have to do is take all-or-nothing off the table, and purge a few other thinking errors while we’re at it.
It’s almost never possible to tackle all of a change at once. We have to start with particular, very specific and measurable actions.
Each specific action is one forkful of behavior change and a set of those actions engaged over time results in a cumulative change. And accompanying those cumulative actions, we need realistic and specific goals as they provide targets to measure ourselves against.
We must be somewhat knowledgeable about what we need to change in order to come up with and set up a practical plan that will lead to sustained change. Some of the knowledge and tools necessary will be specific to us, others universal, but without putting the effort we won’t find either.
Trying to take on multiple behaviors at once is a surefire way to send all of them into a ditch. The resources we rely on to make change happen are limited: attention, self-control, motivation, etc.
But other areas of our lives also use those resources, so even just one additional behavior-change commitment is a big deal. Trying to change too much places unrealistic demands on those resources and dooms the efforts early on.
Change is never just one thing, it’s a lot of connected things, and sustained change doesn’t happen without a process that wraps in all of the pieces.
Long-term behavior change involves steps. It’s a tough, process-oriented challenge to slowly change the behavior and believing otherwise demotivates.
SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:
We all have goals to achieve and behavioral changes we want to implement. Making the resolution is the easy part. The implementation and the work that is to be put in daily is the real challenge.
New research suggests we are less prone to keep working on our goals after we publicize them. This is because we may end up talking about our goals and celebrating our success prematurely rather than implementing them.
Social Pressure makes us fearful, as we can feel afraid of appearing inept. This negative mindset does not work well where we need daily work.
A motivational spike tends to go down as excitement wears off. The brain is designed to keep us away from a problem; not to easily put the effort that could change us for good.
If you don’t plan on what to do, you will find yourself in the same position you were yesterday.
Replace your bad habits with a good habit. Don’t just run away from them.
Having a system of rewards and punishments will make the process of changing less daunting as you have multiple points of rewarded success leading to a larger one.
To change yourself faster, learn to associate what you want to do with a reward.
In this stage of change, individuals are aware of the behavioral change they desire; however, they have no conscious intention of altering their behavior. They may be strongly influence...
In this stage of change, an individual acknowledges the problem and begins an internal debate about pursuing change. A lot of time may be spent in this stage as many may not be ready to commit to changing.
People often get stuck in this stage going back and forth between measuring the benefits and costs of behavioral change. A thorough cost-benefit analysis followed by a troubleshooting session can be helpful here, especially if it is done in written form.
In this stage of change, individuals commit to the intention of changing in the immediate future and have accepted the costs and benefits. What determines the success of an individual in this stage is their commitment to exploring, planning and insuring.
Set up contracts with yourself, by setting specific measurable goals, and detailing how you will accomplish the task at hand, including contingencies in order to stay on track.