Why is change so hard? We all want to do it. Whether we like to admit it or not, we all have one or two things about ourselves that we want to change. It's human nature to want to grow, to get better, to be the best you can be. When we see others on television who seem to have it all it's only natural to get the "Boy I wishes". Who doesn't want more money and a better body? Rich and pretty sounds good to me!
Every time I spend an afternoon browsing a local bookstore I inevitably find myself carousing the shelves of the self-improvement isles. Not just isle. But isles, several of them, loaded with manuscripts by people who want to help me become a better me. People who, unlike me I am assuming, have figured out what need they to change in order to get what they want from life and actually go about making it happen.
Anyone who watches afternoon television knows that on any given day, the channels are overloaded with a host of Host's who are talking some person, couple or family through a crisis. A crisis that apparently could have been avoided if someone had chosen to "change". But once again these brave souls are revisiting the same old tired issues. The only difference is that this time they are using a public forum to try and get help.
Most people who seek change have good intentions. They really want to better their lives. They really have good reason to make a few changes here or there. After all, anyone who actually buys the books listens to the 30-day CD program or even writes a letter to the advice column of their favorite magazine has every intention of making their efforts stick. Right? They are excited about every new insight into their personalities. They are thrilled to finally find the potential answers to what has hindered their ability to make lasting change so far. They can't wait to meet the future improved version of themselves that has been hidden for so long.
Let's face it, who wouldn't be excited about showing off the new body that they are going to have in just a few short weeks? (3 months tops!) I would be excited too if in just 30 days I would have the key to unleashing the power within. Ive been there, I've felt the accelerated heart beat indicating the excitement about all of the "good" that I would be able to do with my new organized life. The list of potential accomplishments goes on and on. Who knows, if I keep this up, I will probably end up being interviewed on the Oprah Winfrey Show after she reads and loves the book I'm going to write. Heck, I could end up running for public office if I don't slow down.
But that's exactly what happens next. The slow down.
Just imagine the disappointment when just a mere 20 or so days later (sometimes sooner), you realize that not only have you stopped any progression toward said changes, you've actually lost the book and scratched one of the cd's.
The hardest part about this stage in the "change game" is that you really thought it was going to work this time. If you're anything like me you actually wrote it all down in a spiral notebook labeled GOALS. And with a sharpie no doubt! After all this was going to be permanent. If I write it down then I must really mean it.
So what happened to all of that enthusiasm of 60 days ago? What happened to the goals that seemed so attainable? Were you lying to yourself? Probably not. Again, we all have good intentions. But......
The simple truth is that change is not easy! Change takes hard work! It's a hard fought, often-uphill battle that, believe me, takes longer than 30 days. It's the beginning of a lifelong process that requires actual thought and planning every single day until the changes become a part of who you are. How do you know when you've arrived at this plateau? I'm guessing that it will have something to do with the seamless way in which your life will flow. You'll start to notice that not so many of your waking hours will be spent putting out fires that could have been avoided. And believe me, when you get to the point where you start to see more standing up than falling down, you're looking at the light at the end of the tunnel. Just keep in mind that the end of the tunnel never actually arrives. Or at least it shouldn't. Growth is a process, and we are forever changing. Change is not a bad thing once you learn to embrace it. We are all always changing, growing and evolving into new people. That's something you can't change.
In a nutshell, self help books and self-improvement cd's are not bad products to invest in. Quite the opposite. If nothing else they are motivational tools that will generally put you on the right path. Depending on the path you are seeking. Just remember that after you turn the last page of the book or turn off the last cd, the real work, the hard part, actually begins.