7 Steps to Gentle Change
It’s been seven weeks since New Years and the setting of those pesky resolutions we wanted to accomplish. Changing fixed habits can be a challenge. So choose only one; a long list is doomed to failure. It takes about 11-12 weeks to create a new habit, so we are about halfway there. Often people give up before they reach this point, thinking that they should already have accomplished the change. Then failure and guilt set in, saying “You didn’t do it right,” “You have no backbone,” etc. This further depletes our self-esteem, making it seem clear to us that we do not deserve positive changes in our lives and cannot get them.
These seven steps will help you keep going or begin again if you have given up:
Clarify. Review and revise your intention--the goal. Make sure it is addressing the problem you want to correct and that it is a priority for you at this time. Are there other goals that have surfaced that you accomplished instead?
Know yourself. If progress eludes you, explore your resistance to the new change. What are the benefits of the status quo? What desire is holding you in the old pattern? If needed, find an additional “carrot” to make the benefits of the change even more attractive.
Persist. Be patient with yourself. It takes time to change a habitual pattern. (It will not help to beat yourself up.) Whenever you are unhappy with yourself for reverting to the old ways, you can call for a “do-over.” Simply do it over the new way. This reaffirms your intention, resets the new pattern and makes a powerful action statement, “I will do it.” The next time you face that challenge, it will be easier. I promise.
Focus. Hold fast to your vision of the new situation. Write the new pattern or desire down on paper, then read it everyday to help you stay focused. Beware of negative self-talk whittling away at your self-confidence or the strength of your intention. Find a symbol of the resolution and place it where you will see it several times a day. This will engage your subconscious in the focusing.
Ask for help from friends and spiritual help from Source to make it a reality. The flower essences, for example, are very useful as support and can be counted as your allies. Find a coach or mentor. Or write down your goal and put it in your prayer box.
Take action. Sometimes we override our desires in order to take care of others, or to keep the peace, or because we see our needs as less important than someone else’s. Even if the only action you take each day is to read your goal out loud, that focus on your intention counts.
Surrender and say thanks. Give up the outcome to the Divine in you, knowing that something loving will come of it. Give gratitude for the progressive healing or change that has already happened and is happening now.
These steps for keeping resolutions are very similar to the steps for manifesting any creative dream or vision you may have and co-creating it with Spirit.
I like to think of “resolutions” as “explorations.” Even if you have abandoned your original plans, it’s not too late to pick up the threads of this exploration of change again and weave it back into your life. Be patient, hold focus, and see the progress! You are a powerful creator--the master of your own destiny.