1. Make a conscious decision to change
Why do so many people who say they want to change stay the same year after year? I’ll tell you why. It is because they overlook the essential first step, the step that really begins to bridge the gap between knowing and doing. That step is … make a conscious decision to make a change .
I’m not talking about making vague statements like: “Yes… this year I’m going to be in shape.” Most people say this to themselves at least once a month. But how many people actually move in that direction? Unfortunately very few.
And the reason? Because it is one thing to simply talk about changing and another completely different thing to decide to make it happen. See, when you make a conscious decision to change, your mind wakes up and starts looking for a way. Then you start to develop a feeling – a deep-seated need for this to happen. That feeling is what many call “desire.” Before you know it, you’ll be thinking about that desire all day and night – the desire turns into a “burning desire.”
Fortunately, we all have a wish, but we may have buried it. But it is there. You have to let your desire drive you towards the goals you have decided to achieve . Don’t let people or your environment convince you that you don’t really have that desire. When you decide that you are not going to continue living the way you do, or when you see how things were last year, you don’t want this year to be the same. When you decide these things, you will have completed the first step …
2. Find a reason!
You have to find a reason to change.
It’s one thing to tell yourself you’d like to get in shape this year, but the question is Why? It’s about having a reason that fuels intense desire and power. (inspiration, as I call it) to get started and to keep going through the difficulties. There’s a world of difference between just wanting something and having to.
Please make sure you clearly identify the reason for your decision to change, write it down and read it every morning and every night. Be specific. I know that you know deep down that you have a reason, you actually have several reasons for deciding to change.
3. “Go yourself”
Since we “see ourselves” every day, we are often unaware of the small changes that occur. If we are not careful, before long, the image we have of ourselves in our minds will not be in tune with reality. What I suggest you do is have someone take a picture of you in a pair of shorts or a bathing suit. You may find this embarrassing, but trust me, it’s worth it.
From this point on, take other photos every month, or every three months and then put them on your bedroom door, or on the refrigerator door … that is, a place where you can see them frequently. It’s about helping you honestly see your changes.
When you look at the photos, ask yourself if you are really satisfied with what you see. How do you feel inside? How do you feel about yourself? Are you confident, energetic and proud? Or is it that now you’re honestly feeling more and more inspired to move forward with your decision to change? What are the pros and cons of continuing in the same direction you are going? Would you like to feel better about yourself and know that you are going to create a brighter future? Remember, time waits for no one!
4. Honor your promises
By setting personal goals, what you’re really doing is making promises, not to me, your family, or your friends, but to yourself. The promises we make to ourselves, even though they are the “easiest to break,” are actually the most important to honor. The very essence of trust is self-confidence.
Would you trust someone who repeatedly lied to you? Someone who broke the rules of the game, over and over again? Of course you wouldn’t. So if you’ve developed a pattern of not keeping your promises, this is a good time to make a change. If you cannot comply, be confident and depend on yourself, it may be the root of why you fail to overcome many of the challenges in your life – much more than you think.
The thing about lying to ourselves is that we never get away with it. We can trick our conscious mind into ignoring or not admitting what we are doing, but deep down, in the place where all the truth of each one of us resides, in that place we see ourselves as we really are and right there we are causing pain and hurt every time we are not totally honest with ourselves.
But you can change this. It is much easier to keep the promises we make to ourselves than it is to break them. And keeping promises unleashes tremendous energy and potential. The void created by the potential for self-deception can also be filled with the confidence of the strength, the certainty, and the honor of your personal promises.
5. Focus on your vision of the future!
Unfortunately, most people will never develop a strong future vision for their lives. They will never admit to themselves, or to anyone else, what their dreams really are, and they will not set a deadline for reaching their goals. Therefore, most people will never begin to use their true potential. What you don’t realize is that if you are not focusing on your future – if you are not consciously creating your life – then you are living accidentally, not intentionally according to your wishes. They do nothing but react to life.
When you have faith in your vision of the future, a resistance is created: when things do not go well, you will be able to improve yourself because your vision of the future will be stronger than your setbacks. By doing the particular things that you have to do to move towards that vision of the future, it will become automatic, it becomes a habit. In the end, you will succeed.
6. Face your fears!
Most people are afraid of change. They are afraid to face the uncertainty that all of us feel when we leave our “comfort zones”. Some are afraid of failing, and others, believe it or not, are afraid of succeeding. What is sad is that many people do not realize that they have been paralyzed by their fears. Millions of people with great potential have been ruined and their entire lives wasted because they don’t face their fears.
You can recognize people who are scared and hiding in their comfort zone by their constant complaints about people who are moving forward. “See that boy over there? I’d have a great physique too, if I trained more ”, (Well then why not do it instead of just talking about it?) Rationalization and excuses have become the only form of“ exercise of ”many people.
Remember this: if you walk away from your fears, they will eventually take over your life. But if you move towards your fears and come face to face with them, they will get smaller and smaller.
7. Take action
Please don’t be afraid to change! Don’t do what so many good people do, which is to “accidentally” stifle your true potential, by clinging to what “looks like” what you are comfortable with. Success is created by action. People who get results are always on the go, even if it’s a little scary. They never retire. Sure, there are always forms of discomfort and stress in your life that could be the obstacles that keep you from acting. Your challenge is to be successful despite all this …
Don’t wait until you feel “ready” to take on a new challenge. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that now is “too soon.” If you wait until everything is “perfect” in your life before taking action, you will be waiting forever! The time to do so is now.
8. Don’t give up!
Sometimes it can seem as if your goals are not achievable despite your best efforts. That’s normal – we all feel that way sometimes. In every challenge there will come a time when things get tough. You have to break these barriers! When you do, you will discover that they were blessings in disguise. You see, we get stronger because of them!
Remember that while you are trying, you have not failed! When you feel like you’ve done your best, and it’s time to let go, just keep holding on. Keep pushing as if your life depends on it – maybe it is. Prove to yourself and others that you are a winner, winners finish what they start!