CHANGE: the importance of recognising which stage you are at
I love September as it always reminds me of that ‘new pencil case’ feeling elicited by going back to school. Not that I ever bought a new pencil case… I was more interested in the new pens etc that went inside and a new timetable! It is about change though and this month sees the start of a new season and having had time to think on holiday, it is traditionally the month when the most number of people want to change jobs, move home and/or leave a relationship!
I know that many readers of Brighter Thinking Tips have been considering these changes (and others) for a while and some of you think that you have been procrastinating.
As a result, you may have been giving yourself a hard time.
However, it is likely that you will have been in the ‘Precontemplation’ and then ‘Contemplation’ stages. These generally occur six months before the ‘Preparation’ stage, where action is imminent in the next thirty days.
After the change is made, there are a few other stages that are gone through and it is possible that you will go back and forth between what is known as, Six Stages of Change or TTM.
Otherwise, if you jump straight in and do something different, the new behaviour or specific change may not last. This can explain why some people who having taken sudden action
may go back to previous partners, return to jobs that they have left, not accept change at work and the challenges of e.g. overcoming nicotine addiction.
When coaching clients who want to make specific changes in their life, usually all of the stages are taken care of. I typically help the client to do a lot of different and new thinking beforehand,
actually make the change and support them to maintain the particular change afterwards.
This helps to explain why the brain-based methods used, succeed in creating lasting change.
So, next time you would like to make a BIG change in your life, ask yourself “what stage am I at with this change?” and consider your response.
It might or might not, be the right time to take spontaneous action and decisions.
Doing some more thinking (especially Brighter Thinking!) about it could actually benefit you in the long run.