Why we change…and why we don’t
We all say we want our lives to get better. We want to leave the toxic relationship at home or at work. We want to stop over-eating or feeling angry at our kids or hating our jobs. We want to take a shot at living our best lives, getting the dream job or marrying the person we love. We all know we don’t want to hold onto negative people, places, things and feelings for too long.
So what keeps us from making the changes we need to make our lives different?
It seems to come down to this: FEAR. “The devil you know is better than the one you don’t.” I remember reading Dale Carnegie’s book “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living” when I was in my early 20s. He has a technique in there that I use whenever I’m stonewalling myself – not changing my life because I’m clinging so hard to something that’s bad for me, just because I fear it’s better than nothing.
He said, “Imagine clearly the worst thing that can happen in this situation. Will you be homeless? Will you have no friends and no money and never be loved by anyone again? Will you find out once and for all that you can’t cut it as a prima ballerina or an astronaut?” (I’m VERY loosely paraphrasing that noble book!)
Well, what then? What if that dire consequence DOES come true?
Ask yourself, “Can I live with it?” You went for your dream of a better life, you failed. Gosh, that sucks. But can you live with it? If yes, if you could endure the outcome should it be failure, then take the leap! Seize the day! Start now!
“Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure…than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”
~ Theodore Roosevelt