Judith Shapland - Time for a Change

Thursday 10 January 2013

Judith Shapland - Time for a Change

Having survived at least five 'End of the World' predictions, I rejoice in the turning of the calendar.

Somehow the Mayan prediction held much more cred than many of the others, but we are all here and breathing. That certainly puts a whole new light on our New Year resolutions.

I grew up in a home where my father was a doomsday soothsayer, proclaiming end of the world prophecies frequently. Those prophecies stayed with me throughout my life, underpinning any real commitment to my goals and dreams.

I did, however, travel with the belief that if I was going to be taken out in some designer apocalyptic disaster, all of our own selfish greed making, I was not going to have contributed to it.

I have spent the majority of my life working hard not to contribute to the demise of others or the planet. So, that when I do finally shuffle off this mortal coil, I will leave it a little better than I found it.

2013 NY resolution - No more goals that I know will only last a week or two leaving me feeling like a failure again!

This time I am planning my year ahead, weaving the changes like a tapestry. I have decided that shifting my thinking in relation to things that I would like to change in my life will be far more productive.

Kind of like when I gave up smoking. I tried to do that for so many years using all the available paraphernalia in an attempt to achieve success, only to fail over and over again, leaving me feeling like I will never master it.

Instead, I changed my thinking. I no longer focused on the actual smoking of the cigarettes, I focused on the reasons why I wanted to give up. Listing all the negatives about smoking, and the reason why it was so important for me to stop, dying was on the top of that list.

The fact that it was really bad for me, hell I had known that for years. But I then began to challenge that part of myself that would continue to do something that could potentially kill me.

Yes, I opened the can of worms. Well if I won’t, who will?

When I got really honest with myself, there were so many aspects about my character and behaviours that I did not like.

So how was I going to quit something that I had talked myself into as a stress relief, which is the biggest crock? Something that I loved, smoking had become a very close companion to me.

Not only was I addicted to the nicotine. I needed it. It provided me with time out from life, it had become my comfort. Even the ritual of rolling my own cigarettes, had become an entrenched part of my daily routine.

So I had the dilemma - give up this part of myself that was so meaningful to me, when I didn’t really like myself anyway. So trying to convince myself to change had no push behind it.  I realised I had better make some changes to me – so at least I liked myself. Then when the internal arguing began I had some traction.

That was many years ago now that the ciggies went. I am still a work in progress though. I have taken to this process of self-re-alignment. I am my own project, so now I don’t worry about other people’s judgements of me or give myself a hard time. One step in front of the other, every day is a new day.

So whether it’s health and fitness or personal relationships, maybe job satisfaction or addressing some of my out-dated beliefs and behaviours, I now have my own bench mark; I live my life to my own standards not the standards of others.

I thought this personal growth stuff would be annoying, time consuming and painful. It is all of those things but it sure beats going around and around with the same old.

Realising that my thinking creates my feeling, which in turn creates my reality – was a great awakening.

If you don’t like where you are – think about it.