January is the month for resolutions. By February, many of them have withered on the vine and died. Why does this happen?
The most common cause is rooted in the fact that change is scary. Campaign promises aside, most of us hate change. We’ll do just about anything to avoid it, and unless our motivation is strong enough to overcome our resistance, resolutions are doomed from the start.
Wanting to change or improve elements of our life or behavior is good. But change causes us interior or exterior conflict, and most of us like to avoid conflict. So if we truly desire change, we have to be ready to fight for what we want.
As an author, I relate many things to fiction. And in the case of change, fiction provides a host of excellent examples. Most stories start when something changes in a character’s life. They might set a new goal, get a new job, lose a job, move to a different city, suffer the loss of a loved one, get a new assignment, meet someone new, or face a sudden danger. Whatever the catalyst for the story, something has changed. The story itself relates the events and happenings that occur as that protagonist deals with the change. The change causes conflict; the character must fight an inner and outer battle if he or she is going to translate the change into something good and transform their life for the better.
When you want to change, you must become the hero of your personal story. Fight to make change a positive element. Don’t give up the first time you face conflict.
Whatever your resolution was, it undoubtedly involved change. And the best way to combat your resistance to change is to understand it. Why do you want the change to happen? How important is it to your happiness or success? What is holding you back?
Build a plan of attack and go out there and fight.
Change can happen in any month and start at any time. You haven’t failed, and your resolution hasn’t turned to dust, until you give up.