We’ve all had to try to untangle a pile of things that are all jumbled together. Christmas lights – bingo. What about computer cables for the geeks out there – when you need to swap out one device, but the cables are all tangled up together…Sometimes you can easily see how to remove the problem and replace it with something that works…Sometimes it’s just easier to unplug everything, clean up all the dusty mess, and reorganize.
Everything in your current life is connected to everything else, one way or another… most importantly everything is connected DIRECTLY THROUGH YOU in some way or another. We often look, closed-mindedly, at one aspect of our life and tell ourselves that we wish things were different. “I wish we had more money”, “I wish didn’t have to work as much”… or for some people in a bad place, “I wish I could stop <insert vice here>”… “I wish I could lose weight”.
The problem is that when you’re trying to change one thing, there is a LOT of resistance to change. Everything else wants to stay the same… it has settled into a routine, and depends on everything else. Try to take one thing out, and something else starts pulling back – doesn’t want to let go. Think about the computer cables, or Christmas lights.
Say you want to feel better health-wise, have more energy, feel more attractive… and you think that losing weight and getting in shape will do it for you. You have an image in your mind of yourself that you see when you look in the mirror, and it’s not the same as what you see. So you set goals for yourself… to lose X pounds by some date. You’re going to walk/jog/bike/run/swim/whatever… go to the gym, do yoga, aerobics, or spin classes…P90X, BeachBody… take your pick. WHY is it so hard to stick to the plan?
For one, there are a lot of things fighting for your time. Work, kids, social events, house cleaning…etc. Nothing else is willing to give up the time. It resists change.
Here’s a test: What’s wrong with the above sentence: “Nothing else is willing to give up the time. It resists change.” ?
If you didn’t notice, it’s an important lesson. What some may have noticed is that it’s a personification of things in your life that may not, in fact, have a mind of their own. It is worded in a way that many people speak of things… a way that acts as though things are beyond your control. How do you feel when we phrase it this way:
“It’s not easy for YOU to DEDICATE the time… YOU resist the change”. We often blame outside factors and word things creatively so so to make it sound like we’re not able to change them – as if they’re not within our sphere of influence. We give up before we even start.
The reality is that we have painful choices to make if we really want to make things happen. If we really want to change things in our lives.
For the person trying to lose weight, it might mean going to bed earlier… which might mean not staying out as late with your friends the night before a morning at the gym. It might mean that you have to give up a hobby that you like to MAKE the time. It might mean that you have to give up that feeling of sleeping in that you love so much (ok, that’s one of my favorites). It might mean that you have to pack a lunch so that you can hit the gym in your office on your lunchbreak instead of going out to lunch with your buddies. To do that, you have to have things on hand to make lunch – so you have to get organized at home. You get the idea.
Just to really drive the point home… Think about a lottery winner – so many are not happy even years after they win what they thought would be the answer to their prayers. Why? Their entire life changes… they lose their friends, their coworkers, their hobbies, their activities… they move to a new place where they don’t know anyone, and they feel out of place. Everything changes.
What about a drug addict trying to get clean? They must consciously make a decision to change their lives completely – change friends, change hangouts, change routines, change their lives.
Now what about you? What have you tried to change, and what has stopped you soon after starting – think about it… what “pulled you back”? Or… what other CHANGES were CONNECTED that you were not WILLING TO ACCEPT to be successful?
WHY IS THIS SO IMPORTANT?
It’s critical to be aware of how things are CONNECTED to be successful in ANYTHING. Whether or not you consciously think of dependencies, your subconscious mind knows what will happen “if…”. Part of your mind will not want things to change. It’s a proven fact (I’ll have to come back and insert a reference) that different parts of your brain have different opinions… truly fascinating.. demonstrated via experiments using patients that have had their Corpus Callosum severed (the communication bridge between the left and right sides of the brain) that showed that the left and right brain, in one case, differed on “their” belief in God. It’s a sure bet that part of your brain likes being lazy, and hates the fear of failure…
A close second to your own subconscious is the pressure from others. We’ve all heard that misery loves company… it’s true. Other people don’t want to lose you. The minute you start changing things in your life that appear, for valid or even unwarranted reasons, to be a threat to your relationship with another person, the other person will resist…Either via more passive means such as not being supportive, or more aggressive means such as using emotional pain to pressure you to stay. Unfortunately for some, things get even scarier – downright sabotage or violence.
The reason it’s so very important to be aware of this is that you don’t have to be a bull in a China shop with your own life to make changes happen. Sure, people and and do effect massive change by uprooting their lives drastically and violently, but you can avoid a lot of that by just being aware of what can happen. Meditating (literally) on the things that you want to change in your life will help you see what else has to change as you FEEL the resistance… You must then learn to accept what has to change and BE OK WITH IT.
Taking things one step at a time in your life… looking at them, visualizing where you want them to be… opens your eyes to how things will have to change. Once you can let go of the things that are holding you back, you’ll be free to move on.