Change requires a choice

In order for us to truly live the lives we wish to lead, there is a certain element involved that I refer to as ‘doing the work’.

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One quote that always seems to resonate with me, no matter what place in life I find myself comes from Elizabeth Gilbert.

“I’ve never seen any life transformation that didn’t begin with the person in question finally getting tired of their own bullshit.”

It feels true for me when I need it as a reminder of my ‘why’ when self-growth feels like… a lot. And it feels equally true when it serves as a moment to celebrate the little wins. 

In order for us to truly live the lives we wish to lead, there is a certain element involved that I refer to as ‘doing the work’. 
Changing habits can feel challenging as hell.
Acknowledging the parts of yourself you might not necessarily love can feel confronting.
Shining light on what you feel shame around can feel almost impossible, and then scary.
Changing neural pathways can feel defeating in the beginning.
You might want to run away and hide in the nearest hole when you start to feel emotions you’ve buried deep, ignored tactically, and built almost professional strategies around specifically not feeling.

But it is always your own choice how, or whether, you approach these things. 

The main thing that’s important to remember, or realise, or understand within yourself is… wishing for change in your life isn’t enough to actually impact that change. It is up to you to decide to make the choice that something, even if it’s “something better than this”, is worth it. 

It can be so easy to get caught up in apathy, especially in areas of mental health where hopelessness might already be a feeling you’re experiencing. But change requires choice. 

Let me be clear here: I don’t necessarily mean that only the big actions matter. Your choice might be to start having a healthy breakfast every morning. That choice can change a monumental amount of things for you, and yet it seems so… basic. Not simple – sometimes just standing up while you’re having a shower can feel like the most challenging thing – but basic in premise. 

What happens from there? What changes have you allowed to come in to your energy or sense of self from choosing a healthy fats and protein-filled breakfast every morning? It’s like the idea that says that making your bed every day can set you up for success, because you’ve started the day doing something organisational and within your power, so you’re instilling the inherent potential within yourself to achieve whatever you choose to, should you choose it.

It can also be the choice to seek guidance. To speak to someone, whether they’re a coach, a therapist, a psychologist, a mentor. Sometimes you don’t even know how much you’re holding in on your own until there’s a safe container for you to share what’s going on for you. And having someone to reflect and feed back to you in this safe container can make all the difference in processing what you need to move forward in this change instead of feeling stuck. Working with a coach and a therapist has, still to this day, been the greatest thing I’ve ever done for myself and for my professional life.

Some things will feel and actually be more complicated. But what happens if you let yourself explore what choices you feel you can make? What happens if you get out of your own way just enough to be able to make just one choice toward the change you want?

Try it and find out.

This article was originally published at Jessica Leigh Yoga.

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