Last Updated on October 14, 2020 by Kari
I’ve taken a ton of personal development courses, read a bunch of books, participated in mastermind groups, and thought a lot about how things can only get better… when you make permanent changes. If you keep doing what you are doing, you will keep getting what you are getting. Things only get better when you make changes. But, sometimes it’s easier said than done. I’ve spent a long time caught up in the place where you learn a ton of information and don’t use one damn piece of it in your life.
A Popular Process That Occurs After Wanting Things To Get Better
I’ve been stuck in this process a million times. You think things can only get better, and you go out and try to make it happen, but then you go back to the way life was and forget about everything you learned.
Things can only get better when you are willing to make some permanent changes in your life and stop reverting back to the way it was.
4 Things To Develop If You Want To Make Permanent Changes In Your Life
It’s easy to make temporary changes for a few days or weeks, but permanent changes are tougher.
There are a few things that I’ve learned along the way that has really made a difference when it comes to creating permanent changes.
In fact, I’ve found that things can only get better when you apply the following things into your life combined with working on your personal development.
If there is one character trait you need to work on to make positive changes in your life, it’s self-responsibility. There is no close second to this.
Things can only get better when you choose to recognize that your life is yours, no one else’s.
This means your mother, brother, lover, best friend, teacher, or anyone else cannot help you make your life better. Only you can do that.
You are the primary creative force behind your life.
Think of it this way: Everyone else is focused on themselves, and nobody is going to devote the kind of time and energy into your life that you need.
This means that you need to stop blaming and complaining. You need to take ownership of your actions and your life and do what you need to do to change your habits, thoughts, emotions, and behaviors.
2. Make Delayed Gratification A Part Of Who You Are
Jon Butcher, the creator of Lifebook – a program designed to help you create and go after your life vision, says that you need to stop getting caught up in instant gratification. He says that anyone who cannot apply delayed gratification to their life will never get the vision they set out for themselves.
In other words, if you are thinking that things can only get better, you need to understand the concept of delayed gratification. It can help you avoid the pitfall of giving up on a new habit that is hard because you want to watch TV or do something more pleasurable at the moment.
Have you heard of the marshmallow test? I’m sure you have, but if not, listen to Walter Mischel talk about it and what it means for their life.
Thinking about the marshmallow experience, you can understand how this applies to your life and whether or not it will get better. You can eat it now (do the easy thing) or wait and get two marshmallows (the reward for sticking to changes in your life).
You may not have practice delayed gratification in the past, but you can do it going forward. Here are some exercises you can do to develop delayed gratification.
3. Have Courage In Your Potential To Make Things Better
Fear and other negative emotions can hold you back from making the changes you want to make. They can keep you from doing the new things that you want to do and make you go back to a place where it’s comfortable and normal (the place where you said, “Things can only get better from here!”)
Things can only get better when you widen your comfort zone by pushing through fear and other negative emotions.
One of the best things you can do is recognize fear and use it as a roadmap to get to where you want to go. When you start to feel twinges of fear, doubt, worry, or distress, you need to dig into it and ask yourself if your body is just trying to get you to go back to your comfort zone or if you are feeling it because you spot something not good ahead.
The chances are high that it will just be your body trying to get you back to your comfort zone, even though that’s the place where you desire changes. It’s easier to live there and be miserable than it is to make changes, and your body recognizes that and tries to keep you from making the changes by sending emotions like fear, doubt, and worry.
You need to thank the emotion that arises for trying to protect you but override its message by telling yourself that you want something better in your life and widening your comfort zone through change is the best way to get it.
I’ve found that courage is the antidote to those emotions. Being determined to make things better and knowing that change is the way to do that can help you find that courage.
4. Make A Commitment
Don’t allow any other possibilities into your life when you take on a new habit or way of doing things. If you truly believe that things can only get better, then you need to commit to making them better.
In other words, it’s a choice. You need to choose to keep doing what you are doing. Therefore, make a plan and choose to commit to the changes that can impact your life in a positive way.
Choose the time you want to implement your new habit or strategy.
Tell someone else what you are doing and choose to hold yourself accountable as you move forward.
Also, I’ve found that implementing new things into your life is easier to commit to when you make it into a challenge with a reward.
For example, if you want to start reading more, then you can challenge yourself to read one book per week for one month and then create a reward that you can have when you meet that challenge. Part of the reward will be doing something to change your life, but you can pick a bigger reward that makes you excited, such as a road trip or a stay in a hotel or a fancy dinner. Boost the commitment by doing the challenge with someone else.