Are you thinking of taking the first step to make a definite change in your life?
Are you wondering how you can make the changes that you want that will stick long term?
You may be at a stage in your life where you are dissatisfied, stressed and unmotivated with work, to the point where getting up for work has become more and more difficult as each day passes. Or you may have a family, and a child who feels anxious about school, such that they are avoiding contact with other children. They may be refusing to attend school altogether,and there is a roll on effect at home.
Whatever the challenges you are facing in your life today, like many others, you may have started this year with some changes in mind that you hoped to achieve.
Have those changes happened yet?
Sure, there may have been some positive experiences so far in the short term, but for whatever reason, you’re finding it hard to sustain these changes throughout the remainder of the year or long term.
Why is it so hard to make these changes sustainable?
It’s important to remember that you’ve had years of experience thinking, feeling and behaving the way you currently do. It has taken you many years to get to where you are today, through many different life experiences. From early childhood to adulthood – all which have shaped the person you’ve become. Therefore, it makes perfect sense that changing the way you think, feel and behave takes time. Not just a few weeks. When visiting one of our psychological experts, we work with you together as a team, so you can make this lasting change and tackle the hurdles together.
These thoughts and feelings you’ve had for so many years, are deeply ingrained in you. To successfully change, we must be realistic in our expectations to change.
The First Step
Allow sufficient time for change to happen. You will definitely feel positive improvements after the first 2-6 appointments with one of our team, possibly because you’ve finally been able to verbalise your concerns and challenges you may have held inside for many years. You will also learn some new strategies, which will show positive changes as you practice. You might think, “I haven’t felt this good in a long time, I think I’m good to go off on my own now”. However, this is the first potential barrier to you achieving that long-term change you really do want.
From our clinical experience, we know that you will feel confronted and overwhelmed when you use these new skills we have taught you, to challenge your old ways of thinking, feeling and behaving. Don’t worry, as psychologists we expected this. Remember, these old ways have taken years and numerous life experiences to shape and develop. If you choose to stop your appointments at this point, it is very likely you will fall back to your old habits.
You haven’t had enough time learning with us, to make that long-term change.
This is why it’s important for us to commit to treatment beyond just a few sessions. To continue working together to push through this stage where the temptation to quit is so strong. To work towards change that will become a part of you for the rest of your life. We will work together to ensure you will continue to implement the new and effective strategies, and to help you problem-solve issues that may occur as you continue your journey of change.
This means that you will be able to overcome your challenges, such as your child’s anxiety about going to school. How satisfying would it be as a parent if your child went on to go to university, or start a new job, and they don’t feel anxious? Rather they feel comfortable and confident when connecting with new people.
Or you may start to learn to enjoy your job and your hobbies. You will be able to notice signs and triggers that the dissatisfaction is beginning to creep back in, and you’ll know exactly how to put it a stop to it! You’ve taken the time to learn these tactics.
Only when you have realistic expectations about change can you truly achieve the sustainable change that will become a part of you.
At Creating Change, our commitment is to support you through your current situation, and equip you with skills to make sure the changes you’ve made will stay with you forever.
Written By Psychologist Mr Gary Wong – www.creatingchange.net.au