I will be really personal now. Maybe a way how to get certain topics out of my chest. My ex-partner was always telling me: „I am like I am and I will not change.“
It was driving me crazy. Of course, it was driving me crazy – it was very true. People can not change their personality. There is, however, something they can change. Their behavior.
Every behavior is just a habit. A habit that was developed over years, acting and reacting to certain triggers. The neuroscience research shows that we can change our habits by developing new habits and letting our old habits slowly weaken. New habit = different behavior.
Since I was a kid I had one very bad habit. When I had a problem that was more complex to solve and I did not know immediately how to cope with it, I spent ages sitting on the problem. I was searching for solutions in my head and if no solution appeared, I just set it aside for a while. So I was procrastinating and procrastinating. Sometimes the problem solved on its own. Often, I just waited until the last minute and did something fairly erratic. Well, from time to time it worked out well and I even felt efficient. But it took a lot of mental forces to keep those problems in my head.
Some years ago, I started doing sales in a new company and in a new market. Suddenly I had plenty of problems like that and I had to find a new way out. I slowly started developing a new habit: when I faced a problem, instead of thinking about the possible solution, I looked for a first step I could do to start the ball rolling. Often it was to talk to someone else. But it could be anything else.
Since then, I started enjoying the problems. It was a good opportunity to talk to other people, which I actually liked a lot.
And yes, people do not change. I still have moments when I realize that I am sitting on a problem because I don’t know how to cope with it. Luckily I know what to do now: I think about a first step to take.
What is your experience with behavioral change?