Every year, many of us make New Year's resolutions with every intention of this being the year that we will follow-up. Every Spring, millions of resolutions are discarded once again, waiting for the following year to be picked up once again.
Why is it so difficult to make progress on these pesky efforts to change? As mentioned in a previous post, Kegan and Lahey have some answers, as well as a methodology to help us make progress.
The entire process rests on the assumptions that if something is easy to do, without any competing forces, we are likely to do it and that it is often not about weak motivation, but about strong competing commitments getting in the way. This is why, for example, the idea of "eat less" is usually not sufficient for those wanting to lose weight. Only a small percentage of people told they need to modify their lifestyle to avoid dying of heart disease actually change their lifestyle. As Kegan and Lahey point out, this is usually not about lack of motivation.
The good news is that Kegan and Lahey's new book "Immunity to Change" has a specific process for making progress toward our goals and commitments and that coaches trained in this process can also help. Through identifying the things we do that get in the way of our goals, the worries and competing commitments behind those behaviors, and the assumptions behind the worries and competing commitments, we can test our assumptions. If it turns out, as it often does, that some of our assumptions are not accurate and can be retired, we free ourselves up to make much greater progress.
Maybe this is the year to keep that New Year's Resolution, or to pick it back up if you have already dropped it. If you are interested in being coached using this process, just let me know.