There are many ways to decide to improve your life by making new goals and having new dreams. How we actually make these changes is the challenge. Here are the stages of change and how you can use them to prepare for change.
There are many ways to decide to improve your life by making new goals and having new dreams. How we actually make these changes is the challenge. Looking at one’s readiness to change is important. Even though a change is needed and we may think we want to do it, it’s important to find out where we are in terms of actually being ready.
Stages of Change
- Pre-contemplation. Thinking of making a change, but no real action will happen in the next 6 months.
- Contemplation. More willing to make changes within the next 6 months.
- Preparation. Ready and preparing to make a change within the next 30 days.
- Action. In the process of change and achieving a new goal for the last 6 months.
- Maintenance. Has sustained change for the past 6 months.
Another thought to consider is that achieving a goal is a step by step process. Let’s start at the beginning and create a goal, like “losing 50 pounds.” How do you expect to lose 50 pounds? First, you need the vision; what are the challenges, strengths, benefits, meaning, and responsibility on your part to make this goal achievable? Second, you need to prepare for this change. What is your commitment to making the necessary changes? What is your confidence in succeeding and who is your support system? Third, what is your action plan? How will you problem-solve your way through obstacles? What rewards will you give yourself as you begin achieving your goals? As you start seeing positive results, how are you going to maintain and prevent relapse to make lasting changes?
Your final step will be your best self. Congratulations!