Updated: Oct 18
The other day I read a blog about life coaches being agents of change. This is a mighty big title to carry when change is often viewed as something huge and scary. And, yet, my role as a transformational life coach is all about empowering people to make positive changes in their lives.
Change is a choice but it can also be forced upon you, especially when you least expect it. When this happens, you have a choice in what action to take. You may be reactive or responsive. However, one action is destructive while the other is transformative.
“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.”
– Maya Angelou.
Change is vital for growth and transformation. Imagine if a tree didn’t embrace the changes of the seasons. It would wither away, ending in a pitiful death, instead of thriving and growing into a magnificent entity. Everyone and everything can decide how to bring change into their lives, be it embracing the different seasons or choosing to follow their passion.
Are you wondering how to make a positive change in your life, starting today? Read on as I talk about nine ways to start making a change today so you can live a life that’s fulfilling, joyful, and meaningful.
1. Replace Bad Habits With Good Ones
A general rule of thumb for breaking bad habits is that it takes 21 days to be successful. Other experts will tell you it takes 21 days to break a bad habit PLUS another 42 days to fully install a good habit. Then you’ve got those experts who’ll tell you it takes anything between 18 to 254 days to break a bad habit!
Whatever you want to believe, you can choose to replace old habits with good habits whenever you want to.
Today, sit down and make a list of all your bad habits. Then make a list of good habits to replace these bad habits. By taking the first step of identifying your bad habits, you’re already starting the process of change. The next step is to start implementing some of the good habits, starting today.
2. Start Installing a Daily Routine
For most of us, our daily lives consist of rolling out of bed, grabbing a cup of coffee, taking a quick shower, and then dashing out of the house to do whatever it is that fills our day. This way of living is exhausting and often results in burnout! I discovered the power of installing a daily routine and as a result, realized there’s a lot of freedom that comes with it.
A daily routine guarantees better productivity, less stress, and more time to focus on your own self-care. When you place a structure into your daily life, you’re giving yourself permission to manage your time optimally. A daily routine allows your day to flow naturally with fewer hiccups.
Today, choose to draw up a daily routine. You can choose to have separate ones for weekly and weekend activities, although I personally do allow my weekends to unfold with less structure.
3. Install Early Morning Rituals
Make early morning rituals part of your daily routine. Starting your day with an early morning ritual could be as simple as writing in your gratitude journal, going for a sunrise walk, or doing some yoga stretches. A five-minute meditation is a great way to kickstart your day.
Start small by getting up 15 minutes earlier than usual and sip on a glass of warm water and a slice of lemon while sitting in a quiet spot, either outside or in your favorite room. Progress to getting up earlier by 30 minutes and eventually by one hour. Choose an activity that’ll bring you to a state of well-being and be amazed by how much smoother the rest of your day flows.
4. Set a New Goal
If you’re one of those people who think new goals should only be set at the beginning of every year, think again! You can set a new goal whenever you want to, so why not do it today? Sit down with a piece of paper and a pen, and start listing all the things you would like to achieve over the next six months. I find it helps to review each of my life areas as follows:
Social and Family Relationships
By reviewing each of these areas, I can see what needs to change and improve. I love to also put together a vision board as part of my goal-setting exercise.
6. Start Writing in a Journal
Journaling is a powerful way of working through your problems and finding solutions. It’s also a good exercise in discovering your inner self as your start to reflect on various aspects such as your emotions and their triggers. You can also use journaling to express your gratitude, and your successes, and as a way of capturing daily thoughts.
Writing in a journal can bring about a lot of new changes as you start to reflect on your life. You’ll also start to see what parts of you need to be worked on as you develop more self-awareness. Make today the day you buy a beautiful journal and start writing in it.
7. Live in the Moment
I’m a huge advocate of living in the moment and while I don’t always get it right, I’m learning to do it more and more every day. The benefits of living in the NOW are enormous. You’re less likely to get anxious about the future while no longer dwelling on the “what could have been” of the past. When you live in the moment, you become more mindful of the present while realizing how powerful the NOW actually is.
Choose to live in the moment today, and start to see the changes take place. You’ll notice you’re calmer, more balanced, and able to see life with more clarity. Your self-awareness will grow, giving you more confidence to succeed in life.
Read Eckhart Tolle's book, "The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment" to discover more about how to live in the moment and why it's empowering.
8. Start Setting Healthier Boundaries
Make today the day you start to stand up for yourself. This is the day when you’re going to say, “No” instead of “Yes”! By creating healthier boundaries for yourself, you’re giving yourself more space to operate the way you want to without feeling you “should” be doing something you really don’t want to do.
Healthy boundaries also mean you’re surrounded by people who respect and honor your space.
You can read my blog on creating a consensus circle and why it’s essential for a balanced and harmonious life. I also share ways on how I go about creating healthy boundaries for myself. I’m sure these tips will help you too.
9. Change Your Thoughts
Changing your thoughts is something each and every one of us can do at any time. By acknowledging which thoughts serve you and which don’t, you’re starting the process of change. Being aware of your belief system and the thoughts that drive it means you can start initiating changes that’ll serve you.
Your thoughts are powerful. They drive your emotions and your actions. Start by observing your behavior and identifying which emotions are responsible for the actions you take. Then, reflect on what thoughts triggered your emotions. I know if I think bad thoughts, my emotions are going to be either sad, angry, or frustrated. If I think happy thoughts, I can expect to feel joyful, excited, or empowered.
Get Micheal Singer's phenomenal book, "The Untethered Soul: A Journey Beyond Yourself" if you want to start shifting negative thoughts.
Change can be scary but if you take small steps every day, you’ll eventually bring about a positive transformation. It’s about setting the intention for change and then identifying what changes you can make today, to start the process of empowering yourself to live a better life.
If you need support in making a change, contact me today. I would love to share my practical tools so that you’re empowered to make the change you want to see in your own life!
This post was originally published on November 22nd, 2021, and updated on November 30, 2022.