Checking in on Change

Change takes time. Change is a process. Change is hard.  All three of these statements are true, and yet they don’t exactly make us want to rush out and commit to making a change. Most human beings prefer stability to change. We crave safety and security, as well as objects, people, and places that are known to us.

January is inherently a time when people try to commit to change. The New Year seems as good as a place as any to make proclamations about how things are going to be different. What resolutions might you have made this year? How are you doing at sticking with them?

Typically, by February or March, the well-intentioned resolutionaries start to fade away (this is a thankful fact to most gym-enthusiasts who can now reclaim their equipment without having to wait). Mostly, this tends to happen because people like the idea of change, but haven’t thought through their plan of action. Both of these components are central to making changes that last.

Here are six tips for making changes.

Step 1: identify what you want to change

Step 2: break it down into smaller goals

Step 3: set up supports that you can check in with and help with accountability

Step 4: incorporate the changes in your schedule (write it down!)

Step 5: begin

Step 6: if you don’t succeed, try again