Change is NOT overnight
You ever had someone tell you, “don’t do this again.”
What about, “you ALWAYS do this. Stop it.”
Or perhaps, “I thought I told you this bothered me, cut it out,”
Maybe even, “are you serious? Again?”
All of those might be attempting to send the right message, but really, saying that sort of thing expects that the other person can enact a change immediately.
Change, however, does not happen overnight. Change takes time. What common things do we see that change? Things like seasons, age, intelligence, and more.
However, the seasons do not just change overnight. Although the weather can change dramatically in a short period of time, the seasons do not. Although we may appear to change our appearance in a short period of time, our age does not. Although our knowledge may change quickly, our intelligence does not.
Things may appear to change quickly. People may appear to see the changes that others are attempting to enact and conclude that they are already happening and concluded. However, change is not overnight.
When things change for people, be it habits or disciplines, it almost always takes time. It almost always requires time and effort and understanding from others.
When someone is trying to enact a change in their exercise routines, it does not usually take just one time for the change to “stick” or be consistent. In the same way, someone who is looking to become less of a perfectionist will struggle with the same thing. They are not going to wake up one morning and be less of a perfectionist.
My thing is this:
People know that change cannot happen overnight for themselves, but often expect overnight change to happen for others
I’m guilty of this, I really am. People tell me things like, “I want to do this differently.” After I understand how someone seeks to change something, I have a tendency to seek the results that change immediately.
But, it is important that people (and me) understand that because we cannot change overnight, we cannot expect others to change overnight either.
Change is continuous. I wrote a lot about consistency last week because it was really on my mind. Well, it ties in here as well.
We want to be sure that we continue to change in the direction that we want to.
When people may say some of the things I listed at the beginning of the article, I do not think that shows that they are being ignorant. I think that it shows what they expect out of you, the same thing you hopefully expect out of yourself. Well, as long as you agree that what they are seeming to complain about is something you would like to change.
Open communication is the essential initial step of change in any situation.
Accountability is a huge thing.
Trust is a huge thing.
Understanding is a huge thing.
All of those require communication. To be held accountable, you must give someone something to hold you accountable to or to hold you accountable for. In the same way, for someone to trust you, you must communicate with the person first to establish a point of reference for that desired trust. And, understanding can only happen with communication, if you do not communicate things like your expectations or your norms, how does someone else know?
Change requires time. Change requires effort. Change requires focus.
“Life is a series of roads. We know the destination that the road will lead us to so we should be careful which road we turn onto” — Richard Santos
Each day, each decision that we make, there is a fork in the road. We decide which direction we go each day and are always changing no matter what. How we decide to change is up to us. But, it is imperative that we consciously remember that change takes time, effort, and focus.