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Does big overall change require massive wholesale action?

Very rarely! More often than not we think in order to make change in our lives or to ourselves, we must go all in. We pile on the pressure by making radical changes leading to short term success. This slowly dwindles as we realise we just don’t have the will power to sustain it.

This then leads to feelings of guilt and disappointment, we beat ourselves up for being a failure and we often self sabotage as we lick our wounds for what could have been. A few months later, we repeat the same cycle all over again and so it goes on making long lasting change a pipe dream.

The old adage ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’ has never been so apt, roughly translated it attests to the need for time to create great things. This is true in everyday life, maybe you’re trying to lose weight, stress less, manage the work life balance, eat healthy, whatever the goal these things take time and patience.

Think of tiny step changes and how they can make a big difference over time. I use the example of someone who habitually has a couple of biscuits with their cup of coffee each day. They’ve reached the point where it’s so automatic and unconscious (a habit) that they don’t even realise they’re picking up two biscuits let alone eating them. They are also frustrated with the gradual weight gain but can’t figure out where it’s coming from.

By consciously becoming aware of our habits and habits around eating and drinking in particular, we can start to get a handle on where we may be falling down. So by choosing to eat just one biscuit with every cup of coffee each day instead of two, we can look at the impact over time. Let’s say the average biscuit is 90 calories, over a 7 day period that’s a reduction of 630 calories, over 365 days that’s a colossal reduction of 32,850 calories - you see what I mean?

The impact of slightly changing your daily habits by small percentages leads to gradual gains, which over time is the key to success. Those radical transformative changes cannot be sustained by willpower alone. Habits are our lifestyle, it’s how we largely live our life, habits are the systems in place that get us to where we want to be. But sometimes those habits become less than healthy over time leading to poorer mental, emotional and physical health. The positive news is that any habit can be changed over time, it just takes awareness, the right mindset and repetition of chosen behaviours to get back on track.

Read more about habits by the acclaimed author James Clear at Atomic Habits.

I am a mindset & behaviour change coach, for help in changing your habits please contact me or to book your FREE 15 minute consultation visit my contact page.

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