Recently, I’ve been noticing some of my own, not so terrific, behaviors robbing me of time, money, health and happiness. Frustrated with myself, I realized it was time to look more closely at some of the shadow sides of my actions.
My memory of the moment of truth is crystal clear. As I stood in the middle of my kitchen, I mentally posed my question, and within an instant, like a thunderbolt, I received a one word answer to what my obsessive behaviors were trying to reveal.
“Well, of course. You’ve got bad habits and no willpower,” the voice of little me piped in, sensing trouble brewing.
“Not so fast,” responded big me, stepping up to the plate. “There’s more to habits and willpower than meets the eye. Perhaps it’s time to build some new habits around current beliefs.”
I’ve been playing the change game long enough to have learned a few things about how it works. I’ve learned that the pain of ignoring some of my beliefs and behaviors far outweighs the pain of owning them. And I’ve learned that once my negative beliefs have been outed, surrender happens quickly creating room for relief and opportunity for change.
And, as often happens, as soon as I “got it,” the habit information floodgates burst wide open. Good information, good ideas and behavioral theories that made sense landed in my lap along with real tools to transform the habits that no longer serve me well. Without doubt, the new behaviors will require practice. But change is not impossible. And practicing baby steps will work!
And suddenly hope replaced guilt and shame. And possibility overshadowed fear and resignation.