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Here’s Why Change Is So Hard.

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I often hear people say that change is so hard.

 

And this applies to any change you’re wanting to create in your life, whether it be losing weight, getting fit or building your business.

Let’s face it – we all have personal behaviours we wish we could adjust, stop, or start. But the mere mention of the word “change” causes most people to feel uncomfortable.

And you may find yourself resisting change, perhaps because of the perceived risk or fear associated with it.

So why do we have such a hard time initiating or following through with our desire to change?

 No matter what the change is the fact is, if it’s different than what you have now and mostly likely it feels uncomfortable.

 The reason why most people don’t change, becoming better versions of ourselves is because we don’t want to do the hard work and most of all we don’t want to be uncomfortable.

 I mean what’s the point of being uncomfortable when you can just stay the same?

 

Why is change so uncomfortable?

Change feels uncomfortable because it requires you to give up and sacrifice the life you have now, including your current thoughts and beliefs, for the life you want to have.

When something is new, you may feel uncomfortable because those very habits that you may want to change are your familiarity equilibrium zone.

 Why we have such a difficult time following through with desired change may perhaps be better understood by looking at how our brains respond to change.

  • Your brain is programmed to focus on the past and to keep you safe and your behaviour predictable.
  • This predictability is your comfort and safety zone. When this predictability is gone, so too does your sense of safety.

What happens is your familiar zone, is replaced by an unknown one, and you can feel fearful and disoriented, not knowing where to turn next to find the comfort and safety you have previously had.

Perception of change:

A renowned psychologist, James Prochaska, proposed that we often find ourselves in the previously described predicaments as a result of our perception of change.

 By identifying where we are in the process, you can then shape and guide your goals to assist you in moving from one stage to the next.

You can read more about Stages of Change here.

 

Change is a process, not an event.

Behavioural change is rarely a discrete or single event; however, we tend to view it that way. More often than not, behavioural change occurs gradually, over time.

 

  • Change is not something that typically occurs in a linear fashion.
  • Returning to problematic old behaviours is often part of the game.

Successful change comes in stages. How long it takes is an individual matter.

 

How to Get Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable.

So how do we make sense of being willing to be uncomfortable and also inviting that discomfort in?

 

The answer is – you have to find a way that discomfort actually becomes part of the pleasure and process you enjoy and accept in your life.

 

The reason why I recommend that you embrace discomfort is because it leads to growth, that change that you are seeking is on the other side of discomfort.

Setting yourself up for success.

1. Think through all the possible avenues towards change, explore how you will achieve the change that you desire.

 

2. You may benefit from drawing up contracts with yourself, setting specific measurable goals, and detailing how you will accomplish the task at hand.

 

For example: I will go to the gym Monday and Wednesday after work for 45 minutes for the first week of my behaviour change.

 

In addition, it helps to develop a detailed plan for contingencies in order to stay on track.

 

For example: If my behavioural change is to quit smoking, what will I do if a friend offers me a cigarette?

 

The first step is always the most uncomfortable.

  • All you have to do is show up.
  • The battle is half won if you just show up.

 

For example: when you first start lifting weights and it feels really uncomfortable, your body may be creaming out “STOP”.

 

And you may not see any results for a while and part of you may want to just quit.

 

You may think “what is the point of doing this lifting that makes me uncomfortable, it doesn’t seem to be making me look any better “

 

Embrace it.

The more you embrace the discomfort you feel and the more you plan to continue, the more you know that it’s part of the deal of creating change.

 

And you may even find yourself looking forward to your next weight lifting session.

 

Self-reflection.

It’s important to continually reflect back upon the advantages of the commitment you have made, check in with your plans, as well as provide yourself positive reinforcement.

 

Acknowledgment of the progress you have made thus far and reflection upon what you have gained is essential.

 

Compassionate self-reflection.

For example, say you are making behavioural changes as you desire to get to work on time but arrive five minutes late after three successful days.

 

Compassionate self-reflection may involve processing the morning and recognizing that you did not pack your lunch the night before; therefore, you had to take time in the morning to do so, making yourself ultimately late.

 

Rather than beating yourself up over the incident, you can plan to pack your lunches the night before.  

 

Rinse and Repeat.

“Repetition is the mother of learning.”

 The more you perform the same activity, the more confident you become.

 Confidence is a tangible thing–it comes from practice and repetition.

 Anything that moves an individual towards making a positive change can be viewed as a success, whether this is on a small or large scale.

 

Accept and love yourself.

 It is important to accept and love yourself at every stage of your journey.

 

Self-compassion and acceptance are what you need — even and especially if you fall back into old habits.

 

Allow yourself to learn from your decisions so that you may take ownership of both the positive and negative ones you make.

 

And lastly, be kind to yourself and take care of your emotional needs while you are working towards a long term change.

 

Remember: You are 100% acceptable the way you are, 100% worthy the way you are.

 

And now it’s over to you…

 

What change are you wanting to create in your life right NOW?

 

  • If you could make the change you desire what would that mean to you?
  • And how will you feel in 2 years’ time if you are living this way?

 

Today is the day to start changing it. Today is the day to start making it happen!

 I would love to hear about your experiece with creating a change.

Please comment below, I woud love to hear your story.

 

Much love ❤️❤️❤️

Irena Geller

Emotional Eating Coach

BSc (Biomed), Cert IV (PT), Wellness Coach (Level 3))

I coach 35+ women to put down their fork and pick up their life.  If you want to end your struggles with excess weight, stress and self-belief, using your strengths and capabilities, book a free 15-minute mini-coaching session with me and I’ll show you how to transform your life.

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