Being stuck in a rut is no place to be, but it happens. It’s part of adult life. Did you know that according to modern psychology it is actually counter intuitive to redirect? That said, it’s sometimes the only answer. Actual Behavioral Redirection however, is sometimes easier said than done. It requires you to break with old habits and patterns, and at the very least it involves a new perspective on some familiar-to-you topic. We get used to how we are, how things are, how we see the world, even if we don’t agree with it. We accept Dogma and dogmatic ideas and principles as what we’re “supposed to do”. But we don’t have to!
When it comes down to it, whether you call it redirecting, reframing, or otherwise, doesn’t it really all come down to semantics? Aren’t all these words just synonyms to embody another word … wait for it … CHANGE. That’s right, the BIG sometimes daunting word, “change”.
SO WHY IS CHANGE SO HARD?
As Humans we adopt and form habits or patterns. These are not always going to be aligned to reflect our values despite seemingly having been formed of our own thoughts and actions – or were they? Understanding these patterns and the sources of our own inner workings can be a helpful tool in learning how to adapt to change.
So let’s fast forward and say you’ve done the work to identify what it is that needs to change in your habits/patterns but you just can’t seem to implement them, you feel resistant to make the necessary changes.
According to Peg Streep, a published writer on Psychology Today and author or coauthor of eleven books including: Quitting: Why We Fear It and Why We Shouldn’t in Life, Love, and Work; “we persist in doing things that do not bring the results we want for 4 key reasons:
The “Sunk-Cost” Fallacy. Concentrating on what you already invested, such as time, money, and effort, may keep you stuck.
Pipe Dreams. Thinking about running away to Tahiti or winning the lottery may help you feel better, but probably will not bring about real change.
Wishful Thinking. Longer work hours at a harder job may land you the promotion, but then again, it may not. And in the meantime, you may get burned out.
Intermittent Reinforcement. When caught in a negative situation, small positive cues may signal that things will improve eventually when in fact they may not. Instead of remaining in a dead-end situation, determine objectively whether things are actually improving overall.
If you are trapped in any of these four sticky mindsets, check out these 5 strategies in this source article from Peg Streep to get you moving again.”
However, if you’ve identified what needs to change and have experienced a “fail” at making it stick, you may be facing what’s known as a “core issue” or a “limiting belief”. You might need to try to dig a little deeper to figure out what that stems from.
Also, know that breaking change into small chewable bites can sometimes help you to easily flow through it. Taking baby steps can remove the anxiety that doing a deep dive straight into change can incite.
What holds you back from identifying and implementing the changes you want to see?
(perhaps you need to be guided in forgiving someone, it could be yourself)
(maybe you’re unsure of what your values are)
(maybe you’re holding onto something from your past that needs to be released)
(you might not believe you’re capable or worthy of something)
(what if you’ve been told you aren’t good enough all your life)
(what if you might actually achieve what you’ve dreamt of)
There are several simple tools and techniques that can assist you in creating an Action Plan to make adjustments in your patterns and behaviors. Just a few examples of these are:
Emotional Clearing Method
Releasing Limiting Beliefs
What do you want to change in your life? What’s holding you back from living the life you desire? Is it old habits and patterns, fear of the unknown, or fear that you might actually be able to get what it is you’re asking for? Only you know the answer.
Sommer Janssen, is a certified Integrative Wellness & Life Coach, Agent of Change, Director of Human Resources, “Bridge” builder, and writer of a whole mind/body wellness blog.
- Peg Streep article: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/tech-support/201403/5-powerful-strategies-get-you-out-rut
- Matthew James, Ph.D article: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/focus-forgiveness/201311/4-steps-release-limiting-beliefs-learned-childhood
- Rachel Eva: Textbook for Integrative Wellness & Life Coaching