For anything to change, we have to start acting differently. Staying away from the casino, the fries and hamburgers, and acting more frugally because of market conditions, all feature as desirable behaviours worth pursuing. To change our behaviour, we often need to change our environment. Further with, to effect lasting change, we need to influence not only our environment, but also our hearts. When we break through to our feelings and analytic side, we prime ourselves for change. How to change your life completely rests on this notion.
To continue with, making progress towards a goal entails appealing to our emotional side and conscious system. Our emotional side is the part of us that is instinctive, that feels pain and pleasure, while our conscious or reflective system is the part of us that deliberates, analyses and looks into the future. Our conscious or deliberate system provides the planning and direction, whereas our emotional system provides the energy. When we get these two systems to work in harmony, we cultivate passion with direction. Change comes easier.
Why Change Is Hard
Besides, change is often hard because we wear ourselves out, tinkering with behaviours that have become automatic. Changing those behaviours requires careful supervision by our deliberate or conscious system. Self-supervision saps our self-control. Since self-control is an exhaustible resource, to exhaust it is to impair the mental muscles needed to think creatively, to focus, to inhibit our impulses, and to persist in the face of challenges. In plain, we exhaust completely the mental muscles needed to make a big change. In this scenario, you sabotage the ideas of how to change your life.
Differently, we are more likely to change when the new behaviour expected of us is crystal clear and specific. So, it is better to tell yourself, “next time I find myself in the dairy aisle of the grocery store, I will go for a jug of 1% milk instead of whole milk.” This statement is clear and more constructive than telling yourself to act healthier. Telling yourself to act healthier is open to many interpretations. Changing our behaviour requires us to direct our conscious or deliberate system, motivate our emotional side, and shape our environment.
Here Unfolds How To Change Your Life Completely
1. Look For Flashes Of Success In Your Life Capable Of Illuminating The Road Map For Action And Sparking Hope That Change Is Possible
Adopting this approach enables us to discover a native solution emerging from our real world experiences. Again, it engages our analytical and emotional side. The highly specific instructions for changing our behaviours for the better appeals to our analytical mind, while our emotional side gets the feeling of hope that change is possible. Activating your analytical and emotional sides enlivens ideas at the core of how to change your life.
Leveraging On Bright Spots To Solve Marital problems
Likewise, for a wife trying to solve a marital problem, discovering a native solution, means unearthing the last time when her husband listened to her. It is constructive for her to dwell on the specific signs of progress; making more eye contact, nodding in the right places, responding to what the other was saying and not attacking or ignoring it. Paying attention to these positive behaviours enables her to see that she is capable of solving her own problems, that she has already solved it, at least in some circumstances.
Evidently, the bright spots in our lives, the times when things worked well for us, provide not only direction for our analytical mind, but also hope and motivation for our emotional side. Discovering what is working stimulates us to do more of it. In plainer terms, clone the bright spots in your life.
To continue with, this method of identifying bright spots, to develop an action plan for change, can be applied to a business setting. The effective behaviours of successful managers can be understudied and cloned by others. Ensuring frequent feedback, not storing it up for once-a-year performance reviews, quick feedbacks not lasting longer than two minutes on specific projects, setting up open-door office hours for employees to drop by for quick feedback on ongoing projects, spotlight here.
2. Script The Critical Moves To Spark Movement In A New Direction
More options, even good ones, can freeze us back into the status quo. Since decisions require careful supervision and self-control, they tax our mental energy. The more choices or options we face, the more exhausted we become. Decision paralysis creeps in. Besides, in times of change, not knowing what options are available invites in uncertainty and ambiguity. This ambiguity also leads to decision paralysis. Because ambiguity is mentally exhausting to us, we tend to revert back to the status quo, the most farmiliar path. In this, we stiffle the change efforts.
What Effective Leaders Do In A Change Situation
Moreover, as a leader in a change situation, setting a compelling vision is critical but not enough. You need to translate a noble goal to everyday behaviour. Translating ambiguous goals to concrete behaviours or critical moves, facilitates change. Scripting the critical moves or behaviours provides crystal-clear guidance that sparks movement in a new direction. For instance, these four rules embody a company’s critical moves or behaviours. Unblock revenue. Minimise up-front cash. Faster is better than best. Use what you have.1 It is constructive to think about the critical behaviour we want to embody in an anticipated tough moment. In line with, it remains more productive to tell yourself to switch to 1% milk, not eat healthy, when you enter the grocery store. As you do this, you have in ideas behind how to change your life.
Insight from, staying focused on the critical moves makes it easier to change direction. Plus, finding something we care about, like a need not to let yourself, family, or coworkers down, also motivates us forward. Simplifying the change process and removing all barriers makes the path to change clearer.
Emphasising with, to create movement, we need to be specific and concrete. In plainer terms, we need to translate a change idea to a specific behaviour, to spark movement. A new behaviour becomes more instinctive and sustainable, as we practice it daily. This daily practice is facilitated by scripting, which provides clear direction, explains how to act, and jars us out of introspection and analysis.
3. Describe A Compelling Destination
Scripting the critical moves or behaviours features important, together with having a clear picture of our destination, where we are headed to, and the understanding that going there is worth the effort. Creating goals that are closer at hand, that can be tackled in months or years, not decades, facilitates change. The right goals that energises us forward beyond the status quo, must come with an emotional component, and a compelling vivid picture from the near-term future that shows what could be possible. A goal with an attractive destination prompts us to start applying our strengths to figure out how to get there.
Emotional Goals Trumps Financial Goals
Abutting on, in the 1980s, a major study of corporate change efforts, discovered that financial goals inspired successful change less well than did more emotional goals, like the goal to provide better service to customers or make more useful products.2 Effective visions that promote change, express values that allow employees to identify with the organisation.
To give support to, a clear picture of our destination, a destination postcard, pictures of a future that hard work can make possible, shows us where we are headed and why the journey is worthwhile. As we begin to marry our long-term goal to short-term critical moves or behaviours, we start creating a recipe for success. Matching a compelling vision to lots of behaviour-level execution propels us forward. Consequently, you translate ideas of how to change your life, to reality.
4. Help Yourself Or Others See The Problems Or Solutions In Ways That Influence Emotions, Not Just thoughts
To change our behaviour and create success in our change efforts, we need to speak to our feelings. This stands true even in organizations. For instance, everyone in the room may understand your power point presentation with charts and graphs, and strategically selected quotes, and might even agree with you, but they may not change their behaviour. Change occurs in highly successful situations when we speak to our feelings, when we find ways to help ourselves or others see the problems or solutions in ways that influence emotions, not just thoughts. With this, you gain upon the ideas of how to change your life.
Going Beyond Analytical Arguments To Our Feelings
Along with, since uncertainty often hallmarks change, analytical arguments may not be enough to prompt you forward. In addition, we need to present ourselves with evidence that makes us feel something. A disturbing look at the problem, a hopeful glimpse of the solution or a sobering reflection of our current habits, all feature as means of making us feel. From this, the sequence of change is See-Feel-Change, not Analyse-Think-Change.
To illustrate with, Robin Waters helped shift an entrenched culture in Target, product by product, by finding a way to instill hope and optimism, and excitement, in her coworkers. She set up displays revealing to the merchants what was possible. How a blue polo shirt pops, catches and draws the attention. Also, she brought in iMacs and M&Ms to ignite people’s interests in colours.
5. Restate What Has Already Been Accomplished, To Shrink Change
A good way of motivating action and bringing about change, features as making ourselves or others feel that we are already closer to our goals or the finish line than we might have thought. That sense of progress keeps us from being easily demoralised. Sequel to, if you are leading a change effort, it pays to remind yourself and others what has been already accomplished, instead of focusing solely on what is new and different about the change to come. By doing this, you shrink change, motivate yourself, and get moving. Also, you contract ideas of how to change your life.
Putting a construction on, we can motivate ourselves with these statements. “To lose forty pounds won’t be easy, but I’ve already given up soda, and I believe that this step alone will snuff out four pounds before the end of the year.” “We have tackled the first three budget lines. We are already one third of the way there.”
Scaling Down The Mission Or Goal
Again, another way of shrinking change spotlights as scaling down the mission or goal. For instance, to scale down a housecleaning task, set a timer for five minutes, and then start with the worst room in your house. When the timer buzzes, you can stop cleaning with an eased conscience. The five minutes session of cleaning provides you with immediate payoff, and gets you moving. You probably won’t stop at five minutes once you start cleaning. Accordingly, you will start taking pride in your accomplishments, and that pride and accomplishment will build on itself. As you continue moving forward, your belief that you can win grows firmer, and stimulates you to start doing away with powerlessness.
Insight to note with, when we make the change small enough, we make it easy for ourselves to score a victory. Of this, cleaning a single room or clearing off a single debt, helps to keep down dread, lift our energy, and propel us forward.
To shed fresh light upon, picking out tiny chunks of work at a time, stays panic and dread. To engineer early success is to engineer hope. Hope is crucial to a change effort. Whenever we shrink change by setting small visible goals, and achieving them, we start to get it into our heads that we can succeed. In consequence, we break the habit of losing, and begin to get into the habit of winning.
Further with, small wins that are meaningful and within easy reach, tones down our fears, reduces the demands on us, and raises our perceived skill levels. These factors make change easier and more self-sustaining. Small targets pave way for small victories that trigger a positive spiral of behaviour. Additionally, small victories generate hope that change is possible. As we conquer our micro milestones, we feel less scared and less reluctant, because things are working.
Growing upon, the feeling of change intensifies within. Small victories stimulate us to translate dread to a feeling of confidence and pride.
6. Create A Positive Empowering Self-identity That Sparks Change
When we make choices, we tend to rely on one of two basic models, the consequences model or the identity model. The consequences model compels us to weigh the costs and benefits of our options, to make the choice that maximises our satisfaction. This model will not serve us in situations where there is no strong cost/benefit case. In such situations, the identity model of decision making stands preferable. This model prods us to ask ourselves three basic questions when we have a decision to make. Who am I? What kind of situation is this? What would someone like me do in this situation? We are not only born with identity, but we also adopt identities throughout our lives. We strive to be good fathers or mothers, responsible citizens or scientists.
Aligning The Change Effort To Your Self-identity
In line with, as we develop and grow in our identities, they become an increasingly important part of our self-image, and influence our decision making. As a result, any change effort that violates our identity, is likely to meet with failure. To succeed in our change efforts, we have to align our actions to our identity. With this intent, it spotlights easier to take up with ideas behind how to change your life.
Applying the sense of this, in a business setting, you can encourage your employees to assume the identity of inventors and innovators. When you create processes and procedures that help to entrench them in this identity, they will become agents of progressive change. The company thrives.
Understanding from, once we start seeing ourselves as the kind of person who does a particular sort of thing, we will want to keep acting like one. Following from, if you are leading a change effort, it pays to show people why the change is worthwhile. As you do that, you help them to cultivate a new identity that will motivate them to champion that change. For instance, showing people why the environment is worth caring about, motivates them to see themselves as environmentalists.
As well, reframe failure as an inherent part of the change process. We tend to persevere when we perceive failure as learning, not foiling.
7. Tweak The Environment To Promote A Desired Change Behaviour
We often wallow in the error of attributing others’ behaviour to the way they are, instead of to the situation they are in. The situation, not an immutable stubbornness built in our character, often influences our behaviour. Since situations are easier to tweak than our character, there is hope for a solution. To tweak the environment is to make the right behaviours a little bit easier, and the wrong behaviours a little bit harder. Clearly, to do this, is to have an eye to ideas of how to change your life.
In agreement with, for a company keen on encouraging more collaboration among its employees, tweaking the environment may mean approving an “open floor plan” layout with no cubicles or dividers. An individual eager to kick a drug habit may stop hanging out with drug addicts or throw away his drug paraphernalia. To control our eating, we can store away our dinner plates, and start eating off a smaller salad plate.
8. Use Action Triggers To Pass The Control Of Your Behaviour On To The Environment
To change ourselves or others requires a change of habits. Since our habits are essentially stitched into our environment, a change of habit follows a change of environment. Another role of the environment, we can pass the control of our behaviour on to our environment, with the help of action triggers. This makes it easier for us to cultivate instant constructive habits that facilitate change. For instance, in this resolve, “when I drop Mary, I will go the gym.” Dropping off Mary triggers the action of going to the gym. By preloading our decision to go to the gym, we preserve our self-control or willpower. When we predecide, when we adopt action triggers, we protect our goals from tempting distractions, bad habits or competing goals.
So, if you are planning to go for a walk this week, write down when and where you plan to walk. In a business setting, you can advocate a “coffee and call” trigger, to ensure that your salespeople check in on their most important customers. A call is placed whenever they pour their first coffee.
9. Put Yourself In Situations Where The Norm Aligns With Your Goals And Publicise A Good Behaviour To Make It Contagious To Your People
If your goal is to become an entrepreneur, put yourself in crowds where entrepreneurial thinking dominates; to kick addiction, run with clean, sober crowds.
Promoting Corporate Change By Publicising The Group Norm
Proceeding with, we often imitate the behaviours of others, especially in unfamiliar or ambiguous situations. Since change situations are often unfamiliar, we need to pay close attention to social signals since they either guarantee or derail a change effort. So, in situations where the majority of your people has embraced the right behaviours, publicise it. Ensure that the noncomforming minority becomes aware of the group norm. Let them know that 80% of their colleagues submit time sheets on time. This will motivate those individuals to correct themselves. When we publicise the group norm, we make a good behaviour contagious, and promote change.
Also, by repeatedly exposing people to a good behaviour, we make it contagious and create a social norm in the process. Positive norms or culture, stimulate notions at the core of how to change your life completely.
10. Notice And Reinforce Your Positive Behaviours And Those Of Others
When we spot movement, when something has worked, it pays to reinforce it. Reinforcement helps us to get past the first step, and maintain the course on our long journey towards our goals. We can reinforce a constructive behaviour with a simple treat or praise. For instance, to encourage her husband to change, a wife can decide to praise him every time he acts constructively, no matter how small. Driving just a mile an hour slower, tossing a pair of shorts into the hamper, taking the clothes out for laundry, all invite rewards. Rewarding the positive behaviours of others with genuine praise and appreciation, helps us to develop better relationships.
Making Headway With Small Victories In Parenting
Conforming to, as a parent, if you want your child to accomplish the goal of doing two hours of homework on her own every night, do not withhold praise and rewards until she completes two hours of the homework. For good with, set small goals and gradually build her up. If she doesn’t get it right, look for a constructive component in the failure and praise her for that.
Of a piece with, as we scan our environment constantly, looking for bright spots, small successes, to reward, we prime ourselves and others, to change for the better. A clear view of our destination or goal helps us to reinforce our constructive behaviours.
Change is a process that tends to feed on itself once it is started. The more we are exposed to something, the more we tend towards liking it. When we take a small step, and start acting in a new way, it becomes increasingly difficult for us to dislike the way we are acting. Correspondingly, to act differently primes us to start seeing ourselves differently. As a result, our identity evolves to reinforce the new way of doing things. In essence, how to change your life completely hinges on ideas that stimulate you to expand your self-identity constructively. As you do that, you give yourself direction, ample motivation, and align to a supportive, positive environment.
1. Chip Heath and Dan Heath, “Switch:How To Change Things When Change Is Hard,” (NewYork:Broadway Books, 2010) 55.
2. Ibid., 82.