We all get excited about becoming exactly the way we want to be, but most of us rarely think about how our lives might change as we change. As you are now, you can pretty much predict how people are going to react towards you, and you can largely predict what your life will be, but when you begin to change, life might not be as predictable. People, who know and love you, know you a certain way. They feel comfortable in your presence the way you are, but when you start to change they might not feel as comfortable with you as they once did, and they might try in various ways (often subtle, sometimes clandestine) to discourage you from following the path of your ideal self. Often your friends will change as you change. This is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact it can be exciting and rewarding. On the other hand staying stuck to please other people is never a good thing. The following is an example of someone who didn’t have the courage to become the person she wanted to be.
It was some 25 years ago when I was a relatively new psychologist and didn’t know as much as I know now about the power of the self-image. The client was a female aged 43. She felt inadequate, powerless and overlooked and she wanted to improve her confidence, assertiveness and popularity. I made her an individually tailored positive power audio tape, which she was to listen to daily. She did this, and her life started changing for the better. Then one day she came to see me looking forlorn and sad.
“I can’t listen to my tape anymore,” she said, looking up at me, pale and tense. “Why?” I asked. Her eyes lowered and tears heavy and wet started dripping down her cheeks, “Because, if I keep listening to my tape I won’t be daddy’s little girl anymore.” I was shocked. She had made great gains and was in the process of unravelling the maze which had kept her powerless all her life, and suddenly, out of the blue, she had decided to abort all her fine efforts to change herself, and slip back into the nightmare world of self-doubt from whence she came.
She had chosen to run back to the safety of the persona of the little girl daddy loved. The unpredictability factor inherent in the magnificent turbulence of change was too much for her.
Striving to become the person you want to be is often scary, but it is always good. Don’t ever give up!