The art of change

It is said the one constant of life is that life is always changing. However, are we open to change or do we get stuck in bad habits?

autumn-path

One of the great challenges is to strive to change our nature. Not surrender to our weaknesses but to constantly examine our life, and see if we can make it better.

We might be wrong. Changing your mind can be hard, if we hold onto misplaced placed feelings of pride or reluctance to appear wrong. Changing your mind in the face of evidence is not a sign of weakness, but strength. Clinging onto the wrong attitude will only hurt ourselves. We don’t change our mind because we just want to fit into societies expectations, we change because we listen to our own quiet inner conscience.

Don’t give up. The most important thing is to have faith that things can change for the better. If we have the attitude “I can’t help it” or “I’m doomed to disappointment” that will tend to be our experience. However, if we always feel that we have the capacity to mould our life and inner attitude, then we have a good fighting chance. Don’t surrender to fate and circumstance, but always persevere.

Wish to change. Even the wish and aspiration to change is very important. If we are not careful, we can just accept the way things are, falling into the same patterns of negative thoughts. If we wish to change our habits, our thinking and how we see ourselves, then this is an important first step. Without this willingness to change and be flexible, we will get stuck in our own rut.

Patience and determination.

“Change yourself slowly
And cheerfully.
Conditions will change immediately
And unimaginably.”

– Sri Chinmoy

There is no quick fix or secret for overnight change. The worthwhile spiritual progress requires patience and determination. There will be times, when we progress slower than we would like or we may even feel we are going backwards. However, if we have patience and determination, we can overcome these short-term obstacles and make improvements.

Try something different. A good test is to see whether we can break out of our comfortable routine to do something really different? Could we get up very early in the morning to meditate on the rising sun? Could we participate in a project for offering something to other people? Could we train to run a marathon? The willingness to put ourselves out of our comfort zone is the best way to help cultivate progressive change. When we come across adversity, we learn how to cope and do something new.

Giving up bad habits just for a dayA good example of getting stuck in bad habits in the modern world is the addiction people can develop for their phone and checking social media / internet. We can waste many hours per week passively checking superficial information. Could we give everything up and see what we can do instead? One day may not sound like a lot, but when something has become ingrained in our habits, it can require a concentrated will to break out and doing something else.

New Resolutions. You don’t have to wait for January 1st to set New Year Resolutions. Sometimes I try to do one at a time. One focused change is realistic and measurable. It gives something to aim at. What would you like to change in your life? What would lead to more happiness? There is always one thing we can always change for the better.

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