Breaking habits that you feel no longer serve you is hard, there’s no doubt about it. Change is often scary when you first start to chip away at old beliefs, thoughts and behavioral patterns. So how can you encourage yourself to keep at it, when confronting the old patterns becomes nerve wracking, when you know perfectly well that you still hold onto old beliefs causing these fears and anxieties?
Take baby steps. Make a habit of reminding yourself every time a situation comes up that you’d like to do it differently this time, even if you do end up doing it the same way. Hit your pause button before sending that negative text or email, leaving a voice mail berating your husband or boyfriend, smilingly agreeing with your boss while passive aggressively seething inside about stuffing down your opinions. Remind yourself that doing things the same way will only get you the same results. Ask yourself, is this the route you really still want to take, is this the reality you really want to create?
When you finally do get up the nerve to do something differently, give yourself a big pat on the back. You deserve it. Talk to yourself out loud and evaluate how that small change is important to the bigger changes you’d like to make in your life. So what if the change was only small? It’s still a change. And you had the courage to take responsibility for your happiness and make that change, no matter how tiny, no matter how frightened you might have felt.
Give yourself credit. Remind yourself that it’s not the end of the world, that in fact it’s just the beginning of a new world you’re creating for yourself. This is a good time to breathe, let go of consequences, and practice not attaching to the outcome, to remember that everything happens for a reason, and that all reasons are for good. Can you get past the fear, the anxiety, and see the good? It doesn’t happen all at once, but over time, if you keep pushing yourself to take action, to change your habits and the beliefs that are behind them, you will see your entire reality change for the good.