Talking to my self: Managing change, Managing the flow …
Author Raja Krishnamoorthy / Kitty - Sep 08, 2013
The feeling of “being on a flow”:
I have to share this joy! Over the last 8 weeks, I am on a flow. I am high on self-discipline, reasonably good in completing my daily goals (except for the last week, I am not allowing myself to waste time. Physically, mentally and spiritually I am feeling very good.
What Am I experiencing differently, as compared to the past?
I am on a personal “transformation” program, and I find that I am making progress. Let me look at some important areas!
- I have always wanted to start writing, start blogging for the last few years but never got down to doing it seriously
- I used to be good with workouts and exercises but the “control-over-food” was always a lost battle.
- I have, over a dozen times, tried to have a daily discipline of “GTD”-getting things done-s but never continued any attempt for more than a week or two.
All these have changed for the last 8 weeks. I have consistently practiced a few things and lived my days differently, in a more disciplined way!
What will I attribute this to? The power of making choices!
Any change effort calls for “giving up” a current practice or trend and “committing to” and doing something different. Our current habits and practices are areas that we already have managed, got used to over time and we do not require any significant change, effort or “life adjustment” for doing them. It is our comfort zone.
A new initiative or practices, on the other hand, are “new things that need to be managed”. The unfamiliarity demands greater effort, unfamiliar challenges, and possibility of failure, inability to do things as planned or accurately and all this simply means: We are pushed for greater energy, focus, and effort and even managing our frustration. It is a “dis-comfort zone” till we become used to the new way. It is clearly a choice between comfort zone and dis-comfortzone. Dis-comfort causes uncertainty, unease, tiredness and a desire to run away.
Or you can stay on, work hard and CHANGE something!
I chose to stay on; I worked hard; Now, I am enjoying it!
What are some of the demands or challenges?
- Persistence: The fact that you have to do things repeatedly, regularly… without getting trapped in the games mind plays… is the 1st challenge. Mind, the dear monkey, constantly keeps chattering, mocking, and playing pranks. It keeps providing distractions, excuses, and alibis for not focusing. One needs to reign in the mind and chase the monkey away.
I chased away my monkey, every time it jumped out. It played its game every now and then but I stopped, caught the monkey and smilingly warned it and chased it away!
- Motivation (Lack of it): “You wanted to change, It is your trip; it is your struggle so you manage it any way; do not expect me/us to understand” ! This is often the silent statement coming from those around you. The looks and responses of others, even close ones, can mean this. Others need not be bothered or impressed or even interested in your serious attempt. But you need to keep going.
I kept going, in-spite of others not appreciating the efforts initially. I also realized that some others, who may not be close to you or even familiar to you, might appreciate and motivate you. It happened in my case!
- Managing extra time, efforts: This is the operational challenge. The change initiative takes more time, energy, resources and conviction. You may have to adjust or give up something to get into the groove: Consistent new habit. I gave up the idea of “either late night sleep or early morning wakes up” idea. I may work late till 11 pm but I am up at 4.30 am for my morning jog/walk-cum-workout.
Choose to work hard; if needed work harder. Period!
These were the top 3 challenges for me.
- What is my learning and recommendation to those who want to change?
a) Recognize the challenges listed above: Be ready to persist, self motivate and put in extra time and effort. You would, if you truly value the benefits of the change you are wanting, isn’t’ it?
b) Set goals; Set daily manageable goals; review each day or even once in few hours as to how you are progressing. I used my stopwatch more times in the last 8 weeks than I have done thru out my life!
c) Create or build an automatic enabling system (a “beach head” as Steve Pavlina calls it): Have all the planning, organizing and co-ordination done for “the key change action” to take place.
For example: I wanted to get out at 4.30 is every morning for the walk. I keep my walking attire, hand gloves (for exercise), the walking shoes, and the backpack ready – next to the main door-the previous night before I sleep. My bowl of cut vegetables, for 2 days of veggies juice making, is kept ready in the fridge: It takes me just 5 minutes to have a very healthy, tasty, fresh, “full of energy” mixed vegetable juice!
d) Do not judge yourself harsh or too quickly. Smile when you falter, but keep at it. There is no point to prove to anybody. Just re start. De-termination just means that. Not terminating your efforts but continuing with it.
e) If you can, find people who will encourage you, enjoy your progress, and share their appreciation for you. It makes a big difference. Recently, My wife and mother-in-law made some significant impact in my motivation.
f) Stay away from de-motivators, and un-facilitative situations for your goals: they can take up and away a lot of your energy. Do not try to clarify or convince them. I benefitted a lot by moving away from such elements in a social-activism group that I belong to.
g) Just do it because you believe in it! Start moderately, enjoy small successes and build bigger targets or goals. As a preparatory exercise for writing blogs, I set targets of writing one note every day. Then realized that I am over committing in the current scenario-where I already have commitments and recast my goals. I have now 15 “notes” thru the last 45 days. Almost a note written every third day or at least two notes per week!
That is awesome compared to the fact that I did not write anything worthwhile for the last many months!
Finally, if there is a will, if YOU have the will…there are actually many ways!
Find your way, and good luck friend!
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