Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Lorilee Lippincott of Loving Simple Living.
“Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes; but no plans.” – Peter Drucker
Many of us (including myself) are looking for lasting change in our lives. Lasting change is more than a great idea or a quick fix. Lasting change is change deep inside us building habits out of what we want our life to be. It is changing who we are and how we respond to the world. And many of us are searching for lasting change in our homes, lives, relationships, personal growth, or health. Even though it often isn’t easy or quick, finding lasting change does not have to be difficult.
Lasting Change Needs Commitment
Commitment is harder and harder to find in society. It seems our lives change so quickly we have learned to only ‘dip a toe’ into an idea before we begin to watch for the next thing to show up. We test it, try it for a few weeks, and hop off to the next thing. Often, people aren’t committing to a job, or a church, or even social groups. Add to that the changes in society around us with ideas, fads, fashion, technology and much more. And it becomes easy to see we are becoming a society of the uncommitted.
However, we need to learn commitment to find lasting change.
A commitment is bigger than a goal. Goals are great but they are often affected by life’s circumstances – which can lead to discouragement. On the other hand, commitment is the idea, the principle, that carries us through setbacks or day-to-day troubles and keeps us steered in the direction we choose to head.
For me, minimalism has become a big part of my life. I committed to simplifying my life about a year and a half ago. I became committed to that principle because of the larger commitment to have more time and control in my life. This intentional commitment has slowly made minimalism a lasting change in my life. During the process, lots of goals have been set, met, and changed, but it was the commitment that continued to make it real in my life.
So what lasting change are you looking for in your life?
Are you adopting minimalism? Working on a hard relationship? Trying to lose weight? Something else? Decide to make the commitment for lasting change.
And then, begin implementing these strategies to create lasting change:
- Expects set-backs, plan for them, and push through them (in sickness and in health… better or worse…).
- Tell others about the end result you are working toward. Instead of saying ‘we are going to go through and clean out some clutter’ say ‘We are becoming minimalist to really simplify our life. We aren’t sure exactly what it will look like yet, but we are excited.’
- Make small goals. And then routinely reevaluate to make sure they are still moving you towards your desired lasting change.
- Own it. Live like you have already achieved it. If you call yourself a minimalist, you will begin to think and act differently. Avoid words such as “thinking about,” “working on,” or “trying out.” These are ‘toe in the water’ words. The power of positive speech can make a huge difference.
Lasting change will always require commitment. The intentionally-lived life is not always the easy life. But commitment muscles get stronger as you exercise them. And committing to live the life you believe in is always worth it.
Lorilee Lippincott helps families simplify at Loving Simple Living. She has just released Simple Living – 30 Days to Less Stuff and More Life. It is on sale this week for only .99. You can also find her on Twitter.
Image: Bryon Lippincott Photography