“Identify the goal/habit that you want to change. Get personal – this needs to be important to you.”
Part of successful change is really connecting with your desire for what you want to change and why. This sets you up for success. Your goal or outcome has to align with your values and can’t be something you feel ambivalent about. While determination and confidence are important, there must also be room for self-compassion. You might need to reevaluate, redirect, or even restart… and that’s okay.
Setting Up For Success:
- Begin with The Foundation and experiment with some Brain Hacks. You can learn more about these terms in some of our previous blogs.
- Review your goal daily. Goals need directed energy to reach desirable states and to avoid undesirable states.
- Identify the goal/habit that you want to change. Be specific. Instead of just saying “I want to change jobs,” get curious about what job you really want and what that would look like. Get personal – this needs to be important to you.
- Recognize why you are the way you are. Start investigating what matters to you and why. If we don’t bring consciousness to this process we can be easily tripped up.
- Identify potential saboteurs. People, places, triggers, lack of resources or energy that might sabotage your efforts along the way. Start to think about how you can reduce their impact.
- Create an action plan. This might require some research, but start to think about small steps that will start to move you in this direction. It might include counselling or coaching to build your confidence and give you support, or it might include increasing your knowledge or adding new skills, finding more resources, joining a group, etc.
- Get support. Who can you share your goal with that will support, encourage, and keep you accountable? You need some cheerleaders! Develop the support you need for new habits to be learned to replace the old ones.
- Track your progress by using a journal. We might not notice the changes until we see them over time.
- Plan celebrations. If we are to ever compete with the reward system of the brain, we must give the brain something to look forward to. Celebrate micro-success and plan it out in advance.
- Continuously visualize the end. Focus on the optimal success, and pay attention to your thoughts/emotions/sensations as you do this.
- Rinse and Repeat!
Now that you know your strengths, weaknesses, and patterns in the area of change that you want to achieve, go back and examine one of your goals again. Write out one area in which you want to change, what Brain Hacks you might try, and how you are going to implement the ideas in this guide to help make change successful. Share it with someone who will support you in this.