Maybe you’ve decided that it’s time to change. Either your bank account is nearly negative, your latest visit to the doctor held bad news, or you simply don’t like where you are in life. Whatever it is, change is ahead.
Usually, change is exciting. However, for some people, change requires stretching beyond a limit that is comfortable. This is why it’s important to list all the reasons why you desire the chosen change. When the going gets tough and you’d rather throw in the towel, you will be reminded that you started down this road for a reason.
Usually people change for one of two reasons: either to move away from pain or to move toward a desired gain. In other words, we move away from punishment and toward reward.
In addition, sometimes we find ourselves resisting change because we fear the coming loss. If you’re about to change your eating habits, you may miss the loss of your daily donut. Or if you are moving states, you may miss the loss of dear friends.
But when the pain of staying the same becomes greater than the pain of change, then we become willing to let go of the familiar and embrace the new.
Here are four important reasons why people undergo change.
Consider these four reasons and take an inventory to decide if you need to change. Oftentimes there are small changes we can make that end up having a powerful impact.
1. An Event.
Events are one of the most powerful reasons people change. For example, imagine that a man has a heart attack and realizes, “I have to change how I eat. I also have to start exercising.” This man became brutally aware of his desire for more life, and was prompted to make the change. Or, imagine that a married couple cannot pay their monthly bills because debt is holding them down. Yes, this is a painful place to be, but it is also important that the married couple open their eyes and develop a financial plan.
Unfortunately, most people wait until crisis happens before they are motivated to do something new. While a crisis may feel dangerous and scary, having your eyes opened to the need for change also brings great opportunity.
Every time you experience a crisis, you can either let it destroy you or use it as an opportunity for personal growth.
2. Reaching Your Limit.
Maybe you’ve come to a place of repeatedly saying, “That’s it. I’ve had it.” This means that you are ready for change! It is time to take matters into your own hands and begin creating your own change.
Even God met His limit as told to us in the Bible. God continually showed mercy to the people in Noah’s day, but he eventually reached a limit and told Noah, “Build an ark, because I’ve had it. I’ve had it with sin. I’ve had it with wickedness. I will see change, because I’m about to make it rain.”
Sometimes it is good to get to the place where you say, “I’ve had enough. I refuse to allow the world to squeeze me into its mold anymore. Things are going to change.” This is an empowering statement. Take it seriously and follow your gut. Don’t give in anymore.
3. Being Out of Options.
Similar to above, sometimes people are prompted to change simple because they are out of any other options. Imagine the young couple again. They don’t have any other option than to begin budgeting and cutting back on their expenses.
This reason for change is also very evident in abusive relationships. Many times women will put up with an abusive partner until severe physical harm occurs. Then they will wake up and say, “I need to get out of here or I’m going to be killed.” They realize that staying in the home is life threatening.
In this circumstance, we must change because the alternative is undesirable or incredibly dangerous. This is usually the most difficult reason people end up experiencing intense change.
There are millions of pressures in our world. Everything from job loss, corporate downsizing, changes in the economy, and inflation cause us to change.
Some people get stuck when they experience this kind of external pressure. They may find themselves sitting around complaining because things are not the way they used to be. They are not willing to change. But we should be determined to make positive changes in our lives before we arrive at the point where change is the most difficult.
If you need to make more money now, not when the final notices start arriving, then know that things do not start getting better automatically. Money does not just drop out of the sky. Relationships do not get healthy without work. You must take the necessary steps to make changes in your life. You must exercise your power of choice.
If you do not choose to change, you may be forced to change by pressures that come upon you.
To create change in your life you will need to be invested in the process. So, remember how I told you to take an inventory while you were reading through these four reasons for change? I suggest you grab a notebook and write down your thoughts after reading.
Is there an event that has happened, a limit you’ve reached, a feeling of being out of options, or pressures from the world that are forcing you to change?
Take charge and start the process of change today. Educate yourself. Find accountability. Develop a process. Then, start down the road to more freedom!
Have you ever experienced any of these reasons to change? Share your story in the comments!