Giving Up Before You Even Get Started!

For many of us, there is something in our lives that we just can’t change – no matter how hard we try. Maybe it’s the last 10 lbs. you can’t loose, or paying off that credit card, or finally ditching your relationship. This can be superfrustrating, especially when you are motivated and dynamic in so many other areas of your life. So what is really going on

‘Failure to Launch’ may be related to not really wanting to make this change. And here is where it gets a bit tricky. You may think you want to make the change but not really want to make the change. What am I talking about – of course life would be better without debt, a boring partner, and a marsupial pouch peeking out from above your
waistband! Or would it? Ask yourself the following 2 questions:

1. What would happen if I didn’t make the change?
You may find that nothing really would change much – so
how inspired a change is it? Uninspired changes are often motivated by ‘shoulds’ rather than ‘wants’. I should get out of debt, rather than I really want more financial security.

2. How does not making this change, and continuing to
believe I want to make this change work for me?

The thing is this – we often keep doing behaviours that have some reward in them, even when we don’t see the
reward. If you can find the hidden reward in staying in your relationship, or keeping those extra few pounds, then you can exchange the hidden reward for an overt, much better reward. For example, snarfing back another box of turtles might be a great way to hide behind the overwhelm I might feel in thinking that I will need to find time to get to the gym 3 times a week. With this new understanding, I could consciously trade the reward of avoidance for the rewards that come with more effective self and time management, even if it means getting to the gym just once a week.

And sometimes we just need a little push towards that change. Find a friend or a support group who is also dealing with making a change. Camaraderie is great for keeping the changes moving.

Ask Jan – Coaching Tips for Easy Solutions

Q: My to-do list is a mile long every day. I can’t stand it. Sometimes I really get off on having a day lined up like dominoes and other days I just want to pull the covers over my head and pretend I am not home. What can I do?
– Super Woman Needs a Holiday

A: Dear Super Woman, Sounds like you might be an adrenaline junkie in need of rehab. Do you get a feeling of self-worth from meeting all your deadlines? Do you decide that you will NEVER work that hard again, only to find yourself swamped under with even more stuff to do? If you get a break and find your energy coming back, do you fill up your schedule immediately? If this is you, you need some serious realignment.

Start by knowing the difference between a ‘must do’ and a ‘should do’. A ‘must do’ is something that has to happen or your world will fall apart. There are very few things on our ‘must do’ list other than ‘breathe, eat, sleep, and well, – those are the big ones. The ‘should do’ list is likely long and filled with tasks that you have confused with ‘must do’s’ – that is, they are things that you believe must happen or your world will fall apart. In most cases, these are things that we feel we must do to fulfill our obligations to others, to fit in with social norms, or to feel that we are ‘good people’. Sometimes they are things that help us feel ‘in control’ of our lives – like getting out taxes in on time. Sort out the authentic ‘must-dos’ from the ‘should dos’.

Then prioritize the ‘should dos’, if you can’t get rid of them altogether. If all your ‘should dos’ are about others, then you will need to add a few for yourself. Self-care keeps you from expanding your ‘must do’ list to include things like: go for dialysis, visit therapist, have reconstructive surgery to vital internal organs.