Don’t be afraid to change yourself

Don’t be afraid to change yourself

“I dare you to change.” —Bil Cornelius

We are almost a month into the new year, or we are already a whole month into this year, depending on when you have time to sit down and read this. How is it going so far? Are you doing great or not so good? Are you doing so bad it’s like the plane has crashed into the side of a mountain? We should never lose heart just because something is hard. All the important things in life take a lot of hard work.

When I think I need to change something, I always look at what I am giving up, and that is a recipe for disaster. Instead of looking at all we are giving up, look at what you are gaining. If you are trying to quit smoking, for example, think of all the long-term health benefits that go along with quitting. If you are young, it is possible to heal some of the damage that has been done. If you are older, think about not adding to what has already been done.

I know even if we have a good reason to change, it still can be hard. I like the idea of rewarding oneself for a job well done. If you need to lose weight, you can decide that for every 5 pounds you lose, to buy something nice for yourself. Because walking is a good way to lose weight, go somewhere beautiful and walk — that way you will kill two birds with one stone. You lose weight and enjoy the beauty of nature. Or take time to just relax, read a good book or rent a Redbox movie.

See, we need to have some rewards, or we face burnout. I do not like to do what I need to do without getting a reward. Some people might be thinking, “What about self-discipline?” Getting a reward is a good motivation for self-discipline. When I worked at a daycare in high school, we used to reward the kids with stars for good behavior. At the end of the week, they could go to the daycare store and cash in the stars for toys or candy. Sometimes they chose to save their stars and get one big reward.

Try rewarding yourself for a job well done and see what happens.

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