Ring out the changes
Over the years I have had the privilege of witnessing much personal change when working with clients which has been a joy to see. Change does not have to be earth shattering. In fact, the majority of shifts people experience are often small and manageable, yet incredibly significant. These baby steps lead to a greater confidence and a renewed faith that "life doesn't have to be like this".
We can wrongly believe that change is difficult, hard to attain and even harder to hold on to. “Change is what happens to other people, not me.” However, human beings are not fixed, set-in-stone, immovable creatures. We are wonderfully adaptive and have great capacities to alter our behaviours, thoughts and feelings.
“But how do I change?” you ask. In today’s world our lives can be hectic and we rarely give ourselves chance to reflect, to take time out to consider what is going on for us. We can spend a lot of time lamenting the past or stressing about the future so a really useful tool is to bring the mind into the present. All you need to do is pause. That’s right – stop. For one moment. Tune in to your environment and the sensations in your body. Ask yourself – “What is it that I am feeling? What is going on for me in this present moment?”
This awareness and attunement are the building blocks of change. When you find yourself reaching for that bottle of wine after work or opening that packet of biscuits and not being able to stop – take a moment to focus on yourself. Are you stressed? Anxious? Tired? Lonely? You may well find that you continue to drink that wine or eat those biscuits but you have just tapped into something that you weren’t aware of moments before – that in itself is a change.
As I write, the New Year is fast approaching and with it comes those familiar New Year resolutions. You may be tempted to re-join the gym, cut out the booze or eat more healthily - all great things! How about aiming your sights at something smaller and more immediate also? Make a pledge to be more present in your daily life in order to gain greater awareness of your thoughts and feelings, for this paves the way for change. Go for it!