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Sunday, March 17, 2013

Developing the Courage to Change

Anyone who has ever attempted to make a major change in his or her life knows what a challenge this can be. Not only does it take courage to make a commitment to your goal, but before you even make a commitment, it requires courage to admit that there's even a need to make a change and then even more courage to actually make the change.


Developing the Courage to Change

When Change is Forced Upon Us
There are times when we're forced to adapt to change because it's forced upon us, and we have no choice but to deal with those changes.

Some examples of this are: loss of a job, death of loved ones, end of a marriage, and our own aging process. These are changes that we have no control over. Accepting that we have no control also takes courage--the courage to face a problem and not to go into denial or make useless efforts to try to change things that we can't change.

When We Choose to Change
In most cases, having a certain degree of control and choice tends to be easier when faced with changes than having changes forced upon you.

 It's even better if you have time to plan for the change and you can do it gradually over time. These type of changes might include: improving eating habits under normal circumstances, losing weight, changing careers while still employed, and so on.

Developing the Courage to Change
Even when we're choosing to make a major change in our lives, we might have mixed feelings about it.

On the one hand, on some level, we're ready for the change.  But, on the other hand, in many ways, it's easier to remain the same, even if we know we've outgrown the current situation.  Our mixed feelings can keep us stuck in the current situation indefinitely, which can be frustrating.

So, how do we develop the courage to change when change seems so hard to do?  Well, depending upon what we're trying to change, we might need to take the change one step at a time rather than allowing ourselves to become overwhelmed by jumping too far ahead.

Often, we have to take it on faith that we're going to be all right while we're making a major change in our lives.

Enlisting the help of supportive loved ones can help us to develop the courage to change.  We want to choose people who will encourage us rather than reinforce our own fears about change.  It's especially helpful to have supportive people who have also gone through a similar process in their lives and were able to make meaningful changes in their own lives.

Getting Help
When change feels overwhelming and the support of loved ones is not enough or it's nonexistent, people often benefit from seeking the help of a licensed mental health professional, an expert who can be objective and help you overcome whatever obstacles are getting in the way of making the changes that you want to make.

Rather than allowing months or even years to pass where you remain stuck in a rut, you owe it to yourself to get help so you can lead a more fulfilling life.

I am a licensed NYC psychotherapist, hypnotherapist, EMDR and Somatic Experiencing therapist.  I work with individual adults and couples.

To find out more about me, visit my website:  Josephine Ferraro, LCSW - NYC Psychotherapist

To set up a consultation, call me at (212) 726-1006.


photo credit: Navy Blue Stripes via photopin cc








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