Blog by Tracy Butz, CSP - Speaker, Author, Influencer
Often times, people avoid making changes in their life because they just don’t know what steps to take. The process can seem overwhelming; they may feel they don’t have the time or resources to get “there.” And if where to start is unclear, either excuses are made or people become stuck and unable to take even one step forward. These realities occur when unrealistic expectations are set and we believe that if we’re not perfect in our pursuit; we’re a failure. The truth is, because we are human, we are unable to attain perfection. Being imperfect is what makes each of us unique. And that’s a good thing.
Perfection should never be the goal because the outcome will almost always be failure. This doesn’t mean we don’t set the bar high, because we absolutely should. But we need to focus on progress, not perfection; target the process we are experiencing now and the steps we are taking, not on the outcome.
So where should you start? In order to make a lasting change, the change itself needs to be meaningful to you. It can’t feel imposed upon you, rather than chosen by you. For example, let’s say you want to spend more time reading interesting and insightful books. In order to carve out the necessary time in your schedule, you choose to reduce your Facebook interaction time by two hours per week. If someone told you that you had to make that change, you probably wouldn’t take kindly to that demand. Furthermore, if someone took it upon themselves to limit your Facebook involvement two hours per week in some way, you would likely loathe it more…primarily because you just encountered a change being done to you. No one likes change forced on them. No one.
In addition to the change being meaningful to you, it also has to be something that you believe in, that you value, that you want to get behind and commit to. You have to know the work ahead of you will be worth it. So what habit or behavior are you wanting to change in your life and why do you want to do it?
Do you want to go back to school and earn a diploma or degree?
Do you want to feel happier?
Do you want a job you enjoy going to?
Do you want to make more money?
Do you want to lose weight?
Do you want to find love?
Do you want to stop smoking?
Do you want to be more confident?
Do you want to say “no” more often?
Do you want to find your passion?
Do you want to laugh more?
Do you want to be a better spouse?
You are one decision away from totally transforming your life. Imagine that!?! And just know, I am with you on this journey, and I am a work in progress, too! I continue to make changes in my life so I keep growing and propelling myself forward in a positive direction—becoming better and better. In fact, the question I ask myself before deciding to alter a habit or behavior is, “Will this one choice to change, help me get one step closer to becoming my greatest self?” If the answer is, “Yes,” I know I am on the right track.
Aim for awesomeness. Strive for spectacular. Just allow wiggle room for slips and trips.