Day after day…month after month…year after year it is the same. You keep doing the same things in your life and yet you wish things were different.
“Why can’t I lose weight?” “Why didn’t I get that promotion?”
“Why do I feel stuck financially?” “Why isn’t my relationship with my kids better?”
Deep down inside, we already know the answer. We have not seriously changed anything to help us realize our goals/dreams. We have not been transformed.
I hear this lament all the time from family and from coworkers. I’ve seen people struggle with “getting ahead” in so many arenas in life yet they keep behaving the same as they always have. They keep believing as they always have. They keep thinking as they always have.
Yet they expect different results.
How do I know this? I’ve had a lot of conversations with people about this. And I have personally struggled with this. We all have.
Why? Why have we all struggle so? Why can’t we seem to “get off the dime” and really experience change in our lives – change that we truly want to see happen?
“If you always do what you’ve always done…”
Our “doing” – our habits – have us right where we are. Right, our habits (a settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up) have set the program by which we live our lives. We have so regularly practiced something…
- Making unhealthy food choices
- Putting off exercise
- Dragging our feet on innovating at work
- Not taking the initiative to deepen a relationship
…that it is now “settled”…it marks who we are. We don’t like it. We want to be different. But habits are “hard to give up”.
So what can we do? Note: the dictionary definition of a habit states they are hard to give up – not impossible. In other words, it is entirely POSSIBLE to change a habit to make it work FOR you and not against you.
Dr. Shad Helmstetter teaches that we can re-program our mind to think more positively by merely repeating new thoughts consistently.
“In logical progression, what we believe determines our attitudes, affects our feelings, directs our behavior, and determines our success or failure:
- Programming creates beliefs.
- Beliefs create attitudes.
- Attitudes create feelings.
- Feelings determine actions.
- Actions create results.”
This works for both negative thoughts and positive thoughts. Both thoughts follow this progression.
So, if you want to transform how you think, for example, you have to change your programming – those thoughts which you allow into your mind.
The same is true for our health. If we eat unhealthy food, we will become unhealthy. A steady diet of junk food will not result in a healthy body. We were not created this way. “Garbage in, garbage out.”
So much has been written about habits. I would encourage you to read about habits, their power, and how you can truly make effective changes in your life. I recommend the following books:
The thoughts these authors share will change your life. They really will. But not by merely reading. It will be in the doing.
If you feel stuck…if you feel hopeless…if you struggle…if you are disgusted you are where you are…CHANGE YOUR HABITS, CHANGE YOUR LIFE.
TRANSFORMATION happens through effective habits. Jeff Olson, author of The Slight Edge, says that true change happens – not in huge dramatic moments – in the everyday effort of moving closer to our goals. More to come on this.
Look at your habits. Looks at your goals. If your current habits do not move you towards what you want, change them. Every day, change them.
There may be a thousand little choices in a day. All of them count.
Dr. Shad Helmstetter