You Don’t Have to Stay Stuck, You Can Change
3 Simple, Powerful Steps to Finally Start Making Positive Changes In Your Life
3 Simple Prep Steps
The great news for Jesus followers is God has made a commitment to finish the good work He has started in you….and He will not quit. (Philippians 1:6)
We do not save ourselves from our sin, only the Savior can do that, and we will not be the ones who perfect ourselves. Again only the Savior can do that.
However, we do have the privilege of working together with God as He transforms us and works through us. No one becomes more and more like Jesus in quality of life, character, and service simply by watching TV or hoping it will happen.
God will work with us, but He will not do everything for us.
So here are three foundational steps to take in order to make positive changes in your life:
- Decide what you want to work on. Some things we should never even try to change because they are in us by God’s design….even some things we may not be thrilled about.
We all have things we don’t like about ourselves, mainly because we compare ourselves to others. But God must like those things because He built them into us.
Height, basic body-type, basic personality-type, and basic abilities are all built into us either at birth or early in life by God. Don’t try to change those things. God likes them about you and He’s way smarter than either one of us.
Pick one or two areas of your life you believe God wants you to focus on now.
2. Commit to learning and doing.
Something almost magical happens when we make a well thought-out commitment. We realize that growth in that area will require some effort and we decide it’s worth it. As Jesus put it, “we count the cost.”
Both learning something knew and taking action are almost always required in order to make progress, so make that internal commitment.
3. Practice the new thing.
Most lasting changes take, on average, 63 days. How can I be so specific? Well, that is an average, but all kinds of amazing research has now shown that it takes around that long for new thought patterns to develop in our brains.
None of us is going to do anything for very long until our mind and brain get renewed and changes. Once that new thought pattern becomes dominant, through doing the right practices for anywhere from 60–180 days, that area of your life has changed.
With just a little on-going management, that can become your new “default” behavior.
3 Super Simple, Powerful Foundational Practices
Once you’ve done those 3 prep steps, here are the 3 things I first have my clients set in place.
- Schedule It. 2–3 x per day for 1–15 minutes. Something like 15 minutes in the morning (as part of your devotions), 1–5 minutes around lunch, 5–10 minutes in the afternoon or evening.
- Record and Review. For 1 week (if it’s a typical week), 3x per day simply write down how you’re doing right now in that area. Don’t try to change it, just record how you’re doing.
For example, when I was trying to reduce my depression levels and increase my joy level, 3x per day I would write down how I did during am, afternoon, and evening that day in regards to my joy level.
It’s good to get a baseline of our current reality so we can see where we are and then later, how much we’ve improved.
AND, very often, simply by becoming aware of those thoughts, words, or actions we begin to make positive changes without even trying.
If you do these 2 things, especially while talking with Jesus about it, you grow closer to Jesus (He already knows about your struggles), experience more of His love and grace, and start making progress simply by becoming aware of Jesus and how you’re doing in that area.
3. Use One Question. As part of your daily schedule simply ask yourself, “What’s just one little thing I can do to move forward in this area of my life? Don’t focus on a big step, just one super, tiny, super easy step you could take in the direction of your goal.
Again, simply asking ourselves that question each day for a week or two helps our brain start coming up with answers that fit us.
Schedule it, record/reflect it, and if you want, ask yourself that question each day for a couple of weeks.
Just doing those three things has helped all kinds of people see real breakthroughs.
If you want more resources on how to cooperate with God in the growth and transformation process check out www.TruVineMission.com
If you want more clarity regarding your purpose and how to accomplish it, head over to www.MarkFurlongCoaching.com