While facing the recent challenges of 2023, lasting positive change takes a front raw seat in everybody’s mind. What are the easy steps you can take, moving forward? The last two years’ lockdowns and living with the pandemic have been the most profound and impactful within living memory. They have been difficult socially and economically, with many negative effects on people’s health and wellbeing.
For some people, lockdowns have provided an unexpected opportunity to make positive changes to their lives. Can we counter the narratives that we typically see of disrupted daily lives and mental health problems?
Is lasting positive change possible considering the negative impact recent tragic international developments have on relationships with ourselves, our family, friends and the wider community?
What are the beneficial changes in people’s behaviour relating to their wellbeing, including self confidence and habits of thought?
In this article we assessed the six easy steps to lasting positive changes that you could experienced across a number of different aspects of your life moving forward.
The distance between where you are and where you want to be might feel overwhelming right now. What are the first steps you could take moving forward?
Follow the six easy steps below to build the foundation for change and then take one small, manageable step towards your goal each day.
Step One: Replenish your energy
Pursuing any new goal brings challenge and discomfort. Yet when we try and grow or change from a place of exhaustion or overwhelm, everything feels that much harder and reduces our resolve.
Prioritise sleep and time for relaxation each day. Disconnect from technology and tune in with your body. Practicing mindful or gentle physical exercises like journaling, Pilates or qigong will leave you feeling relaxed, more resilient under stress and with greater mental clarity.
Step Two: Explore your current beliefs
This isn’t just about identifying what you want to achieve. It requires an understanding, and willingness to let go, of what’s held you back so far. We hold onto limiting beliefs as a tool for self-preservation but if they no longer serve us, they need replacing with more empowering thoughts.
Take time noticing what you believe to be true about yourself. What thoughts do you think repeatedly each day? What do you hear from the world about your goals? Once you understand your habits of thought, ask yourself if the disempowering beliefs you hold still serve you. Where do they come from? How you would feel if you believed the opposite to be true instead?
Step Three: Understand what you really want in your life
It’s easy to know what you don’t want, but do you know what you do want? Career, relationship, health and financial ambitions are often prioritised but there’s a lot to life outside this. What personal characteristics do you want to develop? What’s the quality of your social circle like? Absence of a focused goal for each key area of your life leaves too much to chance.
To create a clear vision, divide your life into categories. Take time to define what you want from your emotional life, spiritual life, career, health and fitness, social life, parenting (if relevant), romantic relationship, financial life, intellectual life, personal characteristics, and your overall quality of life.
Step Four: Get clear on exactly why you want it
Many times we fail to achieve our goals because we don’t understand the true motivation behind them. For the best chance of success, we should be driven by an intrinsic reward that’s personal to us, rather than what we think we should do for society to approve (extrinsic reward).
Ask yourself ‘what’s my goal?’ and ‘why is that important to me?’. After answering these two questions, ask yourself ‘why’ six more times in response to each previous answer. Really focus on the ‘why’ to reach the core of your intrinsic motivation. This identifies the compelling reason that keeps us determined even when it feels hard.
Step Five: Build a new belief system
It’s incredibly empowering to realise each of us can choose exactly who we want to become. However, even after rewriting limiting beliefs, defining life goals and identifying intrinsic motivators, it will take time and repetition to embed this change in our minds.
Think about, and write down, what kind of person you want to become. What thoughts does this person think each day? How do they act? How do they feel? Review it daily and install this new awareness through meditation, journaling or reading affirmations – whatever works best for you.
Step Six: Implement tools that will help you
Even with the strong foundation you’ve created, there will still be times when it feels easier not to take action but you can introduce tools to help stay on track.
You might have a friend you can call, something you listen to each day for inspiration, or a journal to note down what you’ve already accomplished. Whatever will help you most, set the system in place so you have a plan when the going gets tough.
Most people overestimate what can be achieved in a year but underestimate what can be achieved in five. Progress is gradual but building this foundation and taking small, consistent steps is key to creating lasting change.
If you want to make lasting positive change for the better, is best to take easy steps moving forward, instead of feeling overwhelmed. With every single step you take, you are claiming back your power and ultimately, your energy. Taking action in the direction of your hopes and dreams is important because when you take even the smallest step, you’ll get closer to your goals.
We would love to hear from you about the progress you made following these easy steps!