Thursday, November 18, 2010

Making change is hard

Photo Credit: MKSavage

I had a conversation with a friend of mine last night that has really given somethings to think about.  We are both the same age and are both Larger people (I am far larger than he). We were talking about just how hard it is make a change for the better, and how seemingly easy it is to make a change for the worse.  To make things worse we both seemed to be surrounded by people who seem to think the answer is to just say;

“It’s easy just don’t eat so much.”
“Why don’t you just get more exercise?”

To me, that is like telling an alcoholic, “Just don’t drink.” or a smoker to “Just don’t smoke.” Having been a smoker and having struggled to quit I can tell you that those words ring hollow. When I hear things like that I just want to tell the person;

“No really, it’s easy, just don’t be a dick anymore.”

While I have never had the guts to actually say that, there were times when those words danced on the tip of my tongue. We talked for quite awhile and while we talked I knew this conversation would cling to me. I knew I would be carrying parts of this conversation for a long time after I had hung up the phone. We talked about needing to make a change in our lives and having to find a way to do more than just talk about making a change.

This is a difficult thing.

I have long preached about the evils of ‘I Can’t!’ and it is true, I believe that I can make a change. I also believe that making that change is going to be hard and if I have learned anything in the years I have lived it is that I will fail over and over again. I’m thinking I need to change the meaning of ‘Fail’ and ‘Succeed’.

This is also a difficult thing.

I’m not sure I have any answers, which makes me really uncomfortable. I’m a guy, we are all about having the answers, and making sure you know it.

I look at the idea of ‘Change’ and ‘Fail’ and ‘Succeed’ and I see how I need to change the meanings of those words in light of what I am struggling with. I need to stop looking at the forest and start looking at the trees (yeah I went there, reverse cliche) I end up overwhelmed thinking

“I’m old”
“I’m fat”
“I’m lazy”

When I really should be thinking

“I’m alive”

Each Moment is new, each moment is a chance to make a better choice. I have to find a way to forget about all the choices made before the eternal NOW. I can’t change them and worrying about them is going to me more harm than good. Now every moment can be a chance to make a better choice, rather than a time to regret the past.

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