Did you know that you can achieve almost any change you desire to make?
As humans, we tend to fall into a river of complacency, allowing the river to carry us wherever it pleases. We allow feelings of inadequacy, mediocrity, and false beliefs into our minds, convincing us that we cannot be different than we are right now.
This kind of thinking is not only inhibiting, but it can be dangerous. We can choose to change. In fact, we should choose to change.
Settling for stagnant standing impedes opportunity.
We can choose to rise against the current pushing us towards complacency and stagnancy. We can choose to swim upstream and achieve change.
I like to refer to this process of swimming upstream as interrupting your normal. There is power in choosing to take a stand against the patterns of your life and working toward change.
Why is it important to swim upstream and interrupt your normal?
1. It Opens Your Eyes to Possibility
There is possibility for growth and positive change all around you.
Consider a man working a 9-5 job with little motivation and dwindling passion. If this man daily wakes up and chooses to float down the stream of complacency, the chances of this man achieving change are small. This man must choose to swim upstream and reach for the possibilities.
What does this look like?
Well, he could choose to read books about how to discover his passions. He could engage in conversations with those around him about possibility. He could allow himself to wake up and dream about change.
People get stuck in certain patterns because they believe it is impossible for them to break free.
Opening your eyes to the possibilities may mean believing in the impossible and allowing yourself to dream bigger than feels safe.
Pause and ask: What dream have you stuffed for months, years, decades? What would it look like for you to allow that dream to resurface?
2. It Moves You into Another Environment
After you allow yourself to consider the possibilities, it’s important to move yourself into a fresh environment.
Now, don’t think that I’m telling you achieving change means moving out of the country! Sure, sometimes a change of physical location is good and necessary. But more likely, you need a change of your internal environment.
Think again about the man working an unsatisfactory 9-5 job. This man probably wakes up and begrudgingly thinks about going into work. Then, when he’s working, he is thinking about how much he wishes he wasn’t at work. Then he goes home, talks to his wife about how much he doesn’t enjoy his job, and falls asleep thinking about waking up to the same routine the next day.
That is a lot of negative thought about one job! Yet, this man probably does not even realize his job is consuming so much of his time and energy.
He needs a change of internal environment.
He could wake up and listen to a sermon, a podcast, or an audio book. On his lunch break, he could step out of the office and enjoy lunch with a friend. When he arrives home, he could consciously choose to talk to his wife about something other than work. Before bed, he could pray and spend time reading the Bible.
Suddenly, this man has changed his internal environment. He now has the room in his mind (and the energy in his body!) to achieve true change.
Pause and decide: What is ONE way you can begin moving yourself into a new environment? Decide today & start right away.
3. It Forces You to Grab the Life Waiting for You
You’ve allowed yourself to dream a bit and you’ve determined at least one way to change your environment. It’s also important to allow yourself to make different – new – choices.
There is a whole life waiting for you. If you are even the slightest bit discontent, you have the power to interrupt your normal. You have the ability to grab the life waiting for you!
The only problem? You have to actually make the choice to grab that life.
Our society has conditioned us to go with the flow of that river. We float along and accept everything that comes our way. In order to grab the life waiting for you, it’s important to make choices about what you want.
It sounds simple, but consider the last time you made a choice (bigger than your last meal) simply because it was what you wanted and was in line with your dreams.
The key here is to make your choices even stronger than your dreams. You may dream for a million dollars in the bank or a new home in a nice neighborhood. However, just dreaming doesn’t achieve change. Take your dreams and turn them into actionable choices.
You will experience change because you made the personal decision to achieve your dreams.
Pause and decide: Consider your dream from #1 and your environment change from #2. Then, ask yourself, “What is ONE choice I can make today that will move me in the direction of my desired change?”
The possibilities are endless when we learn how to interrupt our normal and swim upstream. No matter how simple this process sounds, it is powerful.
Because just walking through these three steps means you’re ready to interrupt your normal. That is a great sign that you are ready to change.
Jump in, dream big, change your environment, and make the conscious choice to interrupt your normal!
The possibilities truly are endless.
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