Today, a Target.com ad appeared on my screen with the words “a thousand ways to change one thing”. It got me thinking……..When someone wants to make a change in their life, there are actually many ways to go about it. So, if there are dozens of ways to approach changes such as losing weight, quitting smoking, or finding a new job, why don’t more people making the changes they say they want to make? Because most people don’t REALLY want to make a change.
That statement may seem odd at first because very few of my clients and patients who tell me that they want to start feeling happy and having better relationships would question their desire. But somehow, in spite of having access to a thousand ways to change, they fail to do so? Why is that? Why is it that we say we want change, but fail to make the change? It’s usually one of two reasons: 1) we really don’t want the change, or 2) we want the change to come easily.
I heard renowned life coach Tony Robbins once say that if your “why” is big enough, you’ll find the “how”. I agree. Often, we think we ought to make a change, but we don’t really want to. This is often the case when people use the word “should”. They know or feel they should eat healthier or be kinder to their spouse, but they like the comfort food provides, or the sense of control they feel in their relationship. So they talk about change because it sounds more acceptable than to admit they prefer the status quo, but they rarely take the steps required for change.
Which brings me to reason number two: there are actually steps, hard steps, required to creating change. A lot of people want change, but don’t want to have to work too hard to achieve it. This was the case in last night’s episode of Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition. The woman on this episode wanted weight loss, but expected her trainer to have a magic solution that wouldn’t require too much hard work. But alas, life just doesn’t work that way. Some of my clients and patients do in fact begin working with me because they want to know the best way to make their change, but many more hire me to help them uncover what is truly blocking them from creating the change they say they want. I think that’s true for most of us: we know there are a thousand ways to make one change, but something prevents us from starting to implement even one.
So, what change do you need to make in your life? How big is your “why”? How much work are you willing to put in to achieve your goal?
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Dr. Chantal Gagnon
Dr. Chantal Marie Gagnon, Ph.D., LMHC is a licensed psychotherapist, relationship counselor, and life coach in Plantation, Florida. Dr. Gagnon provides individual therapy, family counseling services, and couples therapy in her Plantation, FL office. Coaching services are available nationwide.
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