Talking about change will not create change. Planning for change will not make a way for that change. Scheduling for change will not forge a new path to that change. It takes action. A simple idea with challenging requirements.
I have been talking about change – on the Growing HOPE radio show, in the weekly Reflections column, and to most people that encounter me in a face to face setting.
The problem with all the talk came to light when I looked around at where I am and realized all I had been doing was talking. I had crafted some impressive words but had nothing to show for them. I had some amazing ideas about change and put together some interesting goals for my change, but the talk was not moving me closer.
I have also been sharing about the importance of action – again with my words. Despite my own inactivity, I do understand the importance. I recognize that it takes action to make the thing go right. Each choice I make – whether it is a choice to do something or a choice to not do what I know to do – will support an active journey or help me settle deeper into inactivity. The choices always add up to something at the end of the day (even if that something is more nothing).
Despite my great schedule, my impressive White Board of World Domination, and my well organized Focus Folder, my lack of action became too obvious for even me to ignore (and I had invested plenty of energy trying to ignore that truth of my inactivity). I want more positive results in my life and that requires positive choices – positive, ACTIVE choices – that create the results I desire.
Creating a Path of Action for Change
Start now – It all begins with that first step. In the classic “Santa Claus is Coming to Town,” Kris Kringle (and an adorable penguin) sing the value of putting one foot in front of the other and it is the only way to get there.
Do something – I have discovered that doing something will clear the path for me to do more. It starts with that one thing.
Recognize guilt or accountability – I do better when I have been held accountable. I do worse when I am made to feel guilty about my struggles or lack of action. Learning the difference will help me stay on track.
Keep a record – I created a focus folder that includes a daily checklist of all the items and pieces making up my White Board of World Domination. Writing down (as I accomplish it) what I get done each day helps me to see how I am investing my time and how I can better invest my time.
Time it out – Setting a timer focuses my energy. It also tickles my competitive spirit. I am challenged to get more done before the time runs out.
Things will come up – because something always comes up.
People will get in the way – because people always get in the way.
Circumstances will cause issues – because circumstances always cause issues.
I can look to others to hold me accountable, but the truth is that I have learned to work around the accountability that others offer. The only way to have true accountability is to hold my own feet to the fire.
I can blame circumstances for my struggles – the weather, the temperature, the timing, or other outside influences. The only thing getting in the way of my right choice is my decision to make the wrong choice.
I can look to plans and programs to make the change happen, but there are ways to manipulate even the best laid plans. If I want to see the change then I have to take the actions and steps towards that change.
I will continue to talk change. I know that talking about it keeps it fresh in my mind. I will also push myself to take action. Only action will create the change I talk about.