Monthly Archives: May 2013

Low Stakes Change for High Stakes Potential

Sometimes we find ourselves in a rut, feeling sluggish, bored and with too much time on our hands. Sometimes the opposite occurs and we feel like things are too busy, too rushed and too out of control. Yet what both these situations have in common is that change is needed. Even if we understand this intellectually, change can feel scary and intimidating. So how can we make change feel more comfortable and even fun? By starting small!

Here are a few simple ideas to get you going – the point is to step outside your usual patterns:

  • Spend a few minutes outside, even if the weather isn’t perfect, to refresh yourself and stimulate new thinking

  • If you always do the cooking, let a family member or a restaurant take over this duty; if you never cook, give it a try

  • Test out a new style that appeals to you but might be described as “too much” – too dressy, too attention-getting, too colorful, too young, etc. – release the judgment temporarily and give some aspect of it a try

  • Don’t say “yes” just because this is what you always do; say “no” when you can and want to say “no”

  • If you typically order a particular coffee, sandwich or entree, when you go out, pick something a little different

  • Give yourself permission to temporarily “unplug” as the messages will be there when you return

  • When you hear something that irritates you, remain quiet or change the subject instead of arguing; or, if you usually avoid sensitive topics, calmly share your point of view without, of course, expecting instant understanding or agreement

  • Ask a friend to think of something simple that she/he has always thought you should you try – a new walking trail, book, cuisine, etc. – and then help you get what you need to experience it

  • If you never listen to music, put the radio on, if you love TV, try a magazine, if you typically surround yourself with noise, try a little silence

  • Wear your hair differently; if it’s short, change where you part it, if it’s long, put it up or wear it down; see how it feels to do the opposite of what you typically do

  • Make someone’s day, pay a stranger a compliment instead of keeping your admiring thoughts to yourself

  • Request an opinion from someone who seems very different from you and see if you learn something unexpected

  • Take a break from needing to make your own or others’ actions “good” or “bad,” instead try to experience events without labeling them

  • Ask “why not?” instead of “why?”

Self-Discovery Tool Number 60

We tend to think that we need to do big things to bring about growth and yet growth comes from small steps as well as large ones. Get into the habit of making small changes, they are the foundation upon which big, long-lasting shifts can be built – give it a “small” try today!

Advertisements