Humans are creatures of habit. We tend to go to the same places, hang out with the same people, make similar mistakes repeatedly. Sometimes we make mistakes because we don’t know any better, other times we know better but continue along the same path anyways. Often times the decisions we make give us short term pleasure, and yield the most resistant free path and results. “If you keep on doing what you’ve always been doing, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always been getting”.
I was cleaning my room today and had a thought that things don’t always have to be how they have been. I can make a conscious decision at any time that I’ll make a change in my life and make it happen. These decisions can be about anything like eating unhealthily, drinking excessively, wanting to improve your social/family/dating life… Perhaps you’ve acted or felt the same way for years and you want to make changes. Know that “Your history is not your destiny”. Know that you can change your thoughts and habits and the change could be overnight. More likely it could take weeks, months, or longer but realize that a small decision could have huge impacts on your life.
I read the book The Tipping Point last year and what I took away from it was that huge society changing movements in fashion, or politics and culture often times come from a single person’s or few people’s actions. The momentum that follow that single event can change and shape the world we live in. If you can come to a realization that you want something different for your life, then you can plan out how to make it happen and start taking action.
This epiphany came as I was spring cleaning, and decided I wanted to de-clutter my room. My room wasn’t messy, but I had alot of old clothes, and unnecessary items stored in boxes. I was talking with my friend Peter earlier in the day about how the condition (cleanliness) of your room, office, car reflects the state of your mind. If your living space is dirty and unorganized, most likely your mind is also scattered and disorganized. When you live in a clean, sane, organized environment, when you can find your belongings- life is less stressful, and you can be a more productive individual. If you car, office, hygiene is dirty you’ll be more stressed, less productive and more distracted.
Going back to changing old habits, I had a file drawer next to my bed the past 5 months with my printer on top of it. I moved it a couple times yesterday but I was still not happy with where it was. I then looked around the room for another place to put it and saw a perfect space in the corner behind my tv. Point is, we get so used to the way things are, we become immune to the condition, complacent and accept mediocrity.
A few steps to learning new things, making changes, and gaining perspective:
1. Step outside yourself, and examine objectively. See things as they are, and not how you want to see them.
2. Get good advice from a friend or a professional like a life coach so you can more easily see what you need to change and to get to your desired destination.
3. Look for people who are successful in the areas you want to be, examine what they do and how they do it. Develop a good support system and surround yourself with people who motivate you.
4. Although I’m mentioning getting outside help as a suggestion, I truly believe you must look introspectively first at yourself. Personally speaking often times I know what I need to do to live more productively and accomplish my goals. The challenge is hitting that tipping point, the point where I am so sick of what I’m getting that I decide I have to make changes for the better. This can be in reference to career, relationships, health.
Overall I think the smallest (yet biggest) and most significant changes we can make in life are in our minds and attitudes. We can start to think more positively, envision our dreams instead of focusing on what we don’t want. Don’t focus on how fat or skinny you are, don’t focus on how you’re not a good dancer or person; focus on the body you want, focus on becoming a better dancer and person and have the confidence to know that you can do it.
Small changes I’m working on are: waking up earlier, being more organized, smiling more =)
What are some small changes you made that helped you build momentum and had a huge impact on your life?