Goal Achievement and the Power of Now

“Forever is composed of ‘nows.’”(Emily Dickinson) As mentioned previously, I am working on a course designed to help people achieve their goals based on how human beings actually think and act, in contrast to how we seem to think we act. We seem to think that making change is as simple as making up our linear minds and doing the thing. We imagine that change is a matter of “discipline.”

Therein lies the rub.

The Myth of Discipline We live in the midst of a culture that appears to be intent on putting all parts of life into neatly regimented, equally spaced boxes.

  • We mark time in predictable increments of seconds, minutes, hours, days, months and so on, as if our experience of these things is uniform.
  • We’ve divided seasons into four equally spaced quarters of each year, and then, (as mentioned in last week’s blog,) we kvetch when the actual seasons don’t line up according to our will. (How dare it snow in May!!)
  • We are taught history as the cataloging of dead people and dead things. The point seems to be to accurately place these things in our artificial boxes of understanding. (No wonder so many of us hated studying History in school.)
  • We even plant our crops in neat little rows so that we can more easily harvest them. We then have to add a bunch of chemicals to make up for the fact that this is not the optimal habitat of any of these plants!

Boxes, boxes, boxes, all designed to have control over things over which we do not have control. We imagine that we can insure that we will be ok if we control all of these things outside of ourselves. Fortunately for us, that’s also a myth. (For more information, click here.)

You Are Not a Box Go look in the mirror. Are you a box? No? Then why are you trying to live as one?

The fallacy that it is our job to fit our lives and beings into rigid boxes misses one salient fact: The human folk are organic, constantly adapting, growing, responding, changing. Furthermore, “all things affect all things.” The choices we make in our part of the biome affect every part of the biome. We can ignore that all we want, but that’s somewhat like ignoring gravity. Gravity will exist and perpetually pull all things toward the center of the Earth, regardless of whether or not we believe in it.

The Wise Body Here’s another piece of our dysfunctional fiction: We behave as though we believe that what our linear brains say we want is the only thing we want. We say to ourselves, “If I want to achieve this or that I just have to make up the mind in between my ears and be disciplined enough to do it!” Then we do whatever we can to shut up or ignore the pertinent information coming from our gut brain and heart brain. We perceive that information as “in the way” of our desired goal.

What’s more accurate is that the data from our bodies – our misgivings, squishy feels, resistance to said goal – are indications that we have missed the more complete truth of what we want. If we press on without that information, we may or may not achieve our stated goal. If we do, the change will not stick. It’s not that the body is pitted against our success. The body is rooting for us to create

changes, and it knows we can’t skip over what it’s telling us and still achieve a sustainable, healthy change.

MSOOC This is the premise of my reel series and upcoming course “Making Sense Out of Change.” We have three brains and all three must agree in order to move forward successfully. This is a gift of thoroughness.

If I want to make sustained and sustainable change, we must ask and answer authentically from each brain, over and over and over again: What do I need right now in order to move toward my goal, in this moment?

What we need at different points and on different days will be necessarily different. Our growth is not going to fit into neat little boxes and stages. Again, you are not a box.

The Organic Now By accepting that we are organic and moving toward changed behavior in a way that’s consistent with how we’re made, what we need at different parts of those changes will likewise change. The “Making Sense Out of Change” program has 7 steps to it so that we have a path forward that honors the very organic “now.” Creating and sustaining change requires tools that help us attend to the organic shifts in our experience of “now.”

Better Still I find it really

exciting that in creating healthy changes in this way, we earn the benefit of the change itself, a better relationship with ourselves, and, better relationships with others as we do Step One, “Cull Community.” We are whole beings, and this is whole being growth!

Do you have a change goal? Perhaps you want to eat more healthfully, or break a habit that you know is working against you. The “now” you are in is importantly uncomfortable with that thing you want to see change.

Good! “Discontent breeds lifelong change,” (Sarah ban Breathnach.) Use the discomfort to inspire you. But why settle for just that behavioral change, when, by embracing the ever-changing “now,” you could also grow into a life that embraces more of who you are, enhances your relationships with others, and creates better peace and creativity?

It’s time to use the power of “now” to unbox our lives!

(Stay tuned for an upcoming podcast with the same title!)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Are you uncomfortable with certain aspects of your life? Contact Tiffany today. Let’s work out your whole-life success plan.