Why following through a change feels so tough? Diet, exercise, temperament etc.

Because your mind will never willingly help you enjoy a change.

Remember this – The mind thrives on existing learnings and identity. It operates in the safest, ‘fastest’ and the most ‘efficient’ way. It naturally programs behaviour that keeps us safe, comfortable and feeling good to become habits, impulses and cravings.

Thus, if we learn from young that the uncomfortable is ‘not normal’ or something to be avoided, which is further perpetuated by mainstream media and culture (all the advertisements and marketing that wants to help ‘solve’ the unhappiness we feel), then self-motivated change will be an uphill task.

I don’t judge this. But at some point, you know if you have tipped over into a meaningless or even destructive habit, and that it’s time for us to learn how to deal with our own discomfort. No matter what age we are at. If you want to have a new habit, a new behaviour, a new whatever. It will feel tough. It will feel uncomfortable. And that’s completely ok. Maybe the journey of dealing with the discomfort is the point.

We also tend to over-rely or over focused on the end goal to motivate us in the change. However, mostly that motivation does not persist throughout the journey, especially if we have become used to instant gratifications in daily life. In fact, you might realise that it’s just another ordinary moment in life when we achieved the so-called end goal (if you want to see what I mean – watch Soul the movie from Pixar).

So then if the end is not the whole point, and the journey feels difficult, then what’s the point? What am I gaining? Why is it worthwhile to change? Different people might experience this differently – Is there a voice within that cannot be silenced? A pain that gnaws at you to take that step? Drowning out the voice or numbing that pain only seek to make you feel less alive?

When you do take that step in the midst of your discomfort, your being is practicing a life-long confidence that change is possible; the knowing that this resilience is available; that acting in the best of your interest or your family’s interest or the world’s interest is possible, regardless of how you feel moment to moment. You become an individual capable of owning your moments. It’s a different kind of peaceful and contented knowing.

Do you remember those times when the joy and fulfilment is more intense when you do allow yourself to go through the difficult and not avoid it?

And you can certainly enjoy the journey. Just that the ‘enjoyment’ encompasses both the ups and downs. Just remember that it’s never gonna be up all the way when you want to make a change for the better. Learning to navigate and be at ease with the downs is probably one of the most important skill you can learn in your life.

Learn this skill by establishing a regular Mindfulness practice.
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