Do You Really Want To Grow, Or Are You Fighting To Stay The Same?Nov 09, 2022
Repeat after me:
"If I always do what I always did, I'll always get what I always got."
Pretty simple concept, right?
I work with a lot of people. I watch some of them change their entire lives and recreate their circumstances, and some remain stuck. There's a vast difference between them, and there's nothing anyone can do to help the ones that remain stuck. They might say they want better, more, or different, but when it comes time to get to work, they choose to remain the same.
Let me explain the difference between the two groups.
People Who Are Really Hungry for Change
I was one of the people who was hungry for change. My health was collapsing, my career was in ashes, and my family was imploding. I was in so much pain that I was paralyzed. I couldn't even think straight because my entire world had been turned upside down.
I was in so much pain that I would have done anything to make changes. And I mean anything.
I hired a coach. He gave me some tasks. He didn't demand that I do them, he made suggestions. My coach suggested that if I wanted to improve my circumstances, I'd first need to improve my decisions and my choices. And it was clear that it was up to me to improve my circumstances, and no one could do it for me.
My coach gave me a list of new physical, mental, and emotional choices to make and activities to engage every day. I was to drink 1/2 my body weight in fluid ounces, remove processed foods from my diet, exercise daily, sleep until my body woke up naturally, journal, meditate, and read some select material that he suggested.
I wanted change so much that I did exactly as he suggested. I joke that I wanted change so much that I would have patted my head while rubbing my belly, singing happy birthday, while jumping up and down on one leg if he would have suggested. I was hungry for better.
And my entire life changed quickly from those new activities. No one forced me. I was hungry.
People who really want change don't need to be forced to try new things. If you're hungry for change you don't need to be convinced, and you don't need to understand. You know that what you're doing got you here, and you're not getting to the next level by doing the same things you've always done. You understand that it's what you don't know that you don't know that creates radical change.
You know that if you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got, and you don't need to be coerced, shamed, guilted, or forced to incorporate new things.
I have witnessed clients incorporate simple, new exercises, tasks, and choices in their lives and see radical results. It's the simple things that create the biggest results. The more complex the task, the less likely it is to be effective. People who really want change in their lives build a new life around simple, new tasks.
People Who Are Really Committed to Stay the Same
I have also worked with plenty of people who stay stuck in their existing circumstances. There are a few reasons that people remain stuck, but they all stem from the same basic fatal root cause; they keep doing the same things over and over expecting different results.
Fear of change causes people to make excuses, blame others while pleading victim, procrastinate new activities, or simply keep choosing the familiar path when it's time to decide.
People who remain stuck say they want better, more, or different, but there's not enough pain (yet) to inspire them to choose differently. They find a way to remain the same.
Another behavior is to defend what they know, or who they are. They might try to convince you that they aren't the kind of person who does that, that they don't have time for that, or that they don't agree with that. In essence they hire me to help them make changes in their life, then they fight for their current preferences, beliefs, or personality. It makes no sense to me. It doesn't have to - it's their life, not mine. They are responsible for their results, not me. I can only provide a path to better, more, or different. I can't make them get on or follow the path.
Blame is often a key weapon of people who remain stuck. They might have given up being accountable for their own circumstances long ago, and now they look for a scapegoat besides themselves. When they don't take different action, they give up personal responsibility and use blame to make themselves feel better.
If it's one thing I've learned from using it repeatedly when I lacked personal responsibility is that blame is the weapon of the weak. I refuse to argue with them because arguments are two people fighting to be the bigger victim. I won't play that game. I'll just lovingly let them go to remain stuck without me.
There’s a reason people who want more often stay the same - they don't really want more. They just say they do to make themselves feel better, and they keep choosing the same choices over and over. Hopefully they open their eyes to the pain they keep causing themselves.
Putting It All Together
Can you see the reason someone changes and someone remains the same? Do you want more? Which one of these are you?
The first step in creating more is to realize that everything about you got you here, and the same won't expand your outcomes and circumstances. You need to let this version of you die, so that the new can be born. Are you ready for more? Are you REALLY ready for more?
Or are you just saying you want more?
Get honest with yourself, and you'll see if you're ready and willing to take the actions in alignment with the more you say you want. Just don't lie to yourself. That never helps anyone.