Why does change come so slowly and so painfully?    

Carl Rogers said, “The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.”  Personally, I found that accepting myself has been more of a journey than a box to check on my to do list. 


It has been my experience professionally, that people often wait until the pain of whatever they are struggling with is so great, that they cannot bare the thought of not changing or fixing something about their lives.  We all know someone, perhaps even ourselves, who has avoided ‘doing the work’ for as long as possible; the addict/alcoholic who does not seek treatment until an arrest or removal of children, the couple who seeks counseling on their way to the divorce attorney’s office. 


Rogers also taught us, that real and lasting change comes only after the anxiety of the current state of being is so great, one cannot help but change.  Unfortunately, we spend years cultivating bad habits so it is not surprising that it takes some time to ‘unlearn’ them. 


In my experience, the best and most lasting change can come when we accept that the others in our lives may not be able to change but that we have the strength to change.  As clichéd as it sounds, we all have an opportunity to make our lives better.  So perhaps the question should be, am I ready to try?

 © Nicole Richardson