If you’ve ever committed to starting an exercise or nutrition program, there were probably a few key factors that were motivating you to make a change. Right? Maybe you were fed up with your current situation — clothes not fitting, energy non-existent, a body you don’t recognize when you look in the mirror.
Maybe (though, hopefully not) you had a recent doctor visit and received an ultimatum: Start exercising and change your diet, or you’re going to experience some health consequences.
Maybe you had a deadline – an upcoming wedding, Bar or Bat Mitzvah, or graduation ceremony.
Whatever it was for you, there’s one common thread, you had a sense of urgency. If we’re comfortable with where we are, change is unlikely to happen. It’s when we leave our comfort zone — sometimes by choice, but often because we’re forced to — that real change happens.
If you’ve ever been resistant to change — or, if you’re resistant to it right now — that just means you’re human. We’re all reluctant to change in some form or another. In order to break that pattern, it’s important to understand the source of your resistance.
Generally speaking, there are three types:
1- Denial. You know deep down that what you’re doing now isn’t working or serving you, but you’ve convinced yourself otherwise. If this is you, remind yourself that YOU are in control of what changes happen in your life. Ask yourself: If I could snap my fingers and change my body and health instantly, what would that look and feel like? This may help open your mind to start making the changes that will produce that result.
2- Rebellion. Rebels don’t like being told what to do. They make a million excuses why they’re not going to change their ways. The status quo makes them feel better than the unknown. If this is you, make small changes and practice them daily. Set yourself up so you literally can’t fail by making the changes small and easy to accomplish. As you build confidence in the process, you’ll become more open to making more changes.
3- Resignation. Your outlook on life can be described in one word: Overwhelmed. You think it’s too late to change, and find yourself saying things like, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” You’ve tried every diet under the sun and joined 100 gyms, and never get the results that you wanted.
If this is you, it’s time to reshape your beliefs by making a new decision. Instead of reciting negative clichés to yourself, say things like, “I’m worth it,” and, “I’m deciding today that I’m good enough to lose the weight and feel better once and for all.”
Understand that there will be steps forward and steps backward, instead of looking at every day as a success or failure.
Once you take a little time to understand why you may be resistant to change, it will be a whole lot easier to make the changes that you want and need to make in order to be happier and healthier.
Which form of resistance to change best describes you?