Do you want to change something in your life? Perhaps you want to change a bad habit or a situation that’s dragging you? Maybe you want to help someone in his or her struggle to change something in life?
As for me, I do want to change a lot of things. But it is not that easy as pressing the keys A-B-C or Do-Re-Mi on the keyboard. It is difficult!
But the thing is that, when we triumph over that difficulty in changing the things we want to change in our life, then it would really be a victory!
As my friend snoozes to sleep after his tiring trip, I grabbed an old Kerygma magazine on the shelf and started reading. As I turned to a page, I’ve read Bo Sanchez’s article “Who’s Afraid of Change?”
He shares that there are wrong tools and right tools used to realize change – it maybe something in your life or somebody else’s life. The wrong tools, which are being used unfortunately by many, are facts, fear, and force.
See why a doctor who knows the life damaging effects of smoking still burns a stick in his mouth. He knows the facts but why doesn’t he change? Why does he smoke despite all the facts you (or he) can think of? Why does a man who has been warned that his days on this earth are going to end soon unless and until he stops his unhealthy eating habits? Or how about you in grade school being threatened or forced by your “monster” teacher to do ‘this and that’ or simply sit and shut up? You may be so quiet when that teacher comes but you shout out loud and even cheer more when she goes out of the class. Alright, it might not be you. It might have been your classmates. I had classmates like that before. Good for me, I had no issues with my teachers before. (To my teachers, I thank you.) They seem to be biased when I had a bit of misbehavior. (Kidding!)
So you see, these tools do not work. Facts, fear, or foce do not work. You may object and say, “It does work!” Oh yes, it does but only for a short while. The effect is not sustainable. People change because of facts, fear, or force but after some days or weeks, they go back to their old lives.
Do you see these people? Did you have experiences like this when you were trying to change something in your life but it is simply not working? Not simply, but painfully not working.
But here’s the good news. We can really change. Yes, we can change using the right tools. Here they are: Relate. Repeat. Reframe.
“And do it in an emotional relationship of hope.”
Bo Sanchez shared the gargantuan difference between how a certain Dean Ornish practices his healing by teaching his patients, being with them, living with them and maintaining a personal relationship – as against to merely performing a bypass operation and presenting the facts – with the doctor saying something like, “Your artery is clogged. You need to have a bypass. You’ve got to do this and that.”
“Dr. Edward Miller, CEO of Johns Hopkins Hospital and the dean of the medical school of John Hopkins University says that two years after the bypass operation of patients, study after study say that 90 percent do not change lifestyle.”
Astonishingly, on the other hand, 70 percent of the patients of Dean Ornish would have maintained their new lifestyle. “They would still exercise, eat healthy food, and do meditation and yoga.”
It was all because he used the right tools. He had an emotional relationship with them. He lived with them, developed a habit with them through repetition, and he reframed their thinking in the right way. Again: relate, repeat, reframe.
Look at changed people. You can see this pattern. You see the pattern where relationships, repetition, and reframing of thinking played in the arena of their story of changed life.
Review your relationships. In an emotional way, revisit it. Link it why you have to change this or that. Seek your emotional why.
Seek help from good friends. They can help. Be a good friend to someone else. Nurture yourself with this message with the help of a support group.
Sow this message to others.
Change something by starting a new habit. Develop it. They say that habits are formed in 20 to 30 days. And consistency and repetition is the key. If you break it, don’t stop. Just keep on doing it with all your effort until you do it effortlessly.
Reframe your way of thinking. Reframe your thoughts. Keep on feeding your mind with good resources. Read books. Read magazines (even old ones). Attend seminars. Keep on learning. Open your mind to God’s wisdom.
Once again, to see the change coming, use the right tools: Relate. Repeat. Reframe.
(Chris Dao-anis, CPA, DTM is a trainer and speaker on personal and organizational leadership. His latest book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. For talks and trainings, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit his website at www.chrispoweracademy.com.)