15 Nov What’s one thing you can change today that would change tomorrow?
What’s that one thing you wish you could change? That one thing that you always circle back to in your mind thinking, if only I could change this part of my life.
- I wish I could lose weight (or exercise more)! I wish I could get noticed at work more.
- I wish I could be a better mum / dad.
- I wish I felt more spiritual.
- I wish I could watch less TV.
- I wish I could play the (insert here instrument of choice).
- I wish I could get a new job.
- I wish I was better at praying.
- I wish I could get a boyfriend/girlfriend.
The one thing I can pretty much guarantee you do think on a regular basis is: I wish I could change that one thing that I wish I could change.
The struggle is real!
The problem is that most of us look in the mirror in the morning and see two people, the person we are now and the person we hope to be someday. And how well you feel you are progressing in that process can have a huge impact on your sense of self-worth and self-esteem.
Too often we find ourselves caught in the middle. Trapped between our present reality and a future that always seems just around the corner.
So why don’t we change? Why do we feel trapped?
Here’s three possible reasons why you might feel trapped:
1. You’re trying to be someone else!
This is where the highlight reels of thousands upon thousands of ‘influencers’ doesn’t help. If you’re feeling trapped between who you are today and who you want to be tomorrow, then stop comparing your life to someone else’s.
You will never be as successful or as pretty or as talented as someone else. You can only be as successful and as pretty and as talented as God made you to be!!
And you can be all those things – but it needs to be according to the way God made you, not the way He made someone else.
2. You’re trying to be you too soon!
We also need to give ourselves a break. Everything takes time. Change, success, family, career progression, weight loss, musical talent… none of these things happen overnight.
We live in such an on-demand culture that we have lost our patience.
We have lost our ability to wait and work towards things.
What we actually mean by tomorrow might be 6 months, or 5 years or 10000 hours! (That’s how long they reckon it takes most people to become world class in any kind of talent or skill – 10000 hours! Do the math and have a look at how many hours a week that will take for the next 10 years!) So stop trying to be an overnight success and commit to the long game.
3. You’re too overwhelmed by all that needs to change.
It’s not because we’re lazy or unmotivated that most people don’t change, it’s because we’re overwhelmed. There are so many things we want to change we end up with analysis paralysis.
Where do you start? How do you start?
Here’s a couple of thoughts to help you finally get moving again:
Step 1: Picture the right you!
We all have an image of who we are wanting to become that is easily distorted. So before we start to change ourselves we need to make sure that the image we are wanting to change into is the right image.
Right at the start of the Bible it says that:
“God created humanity in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27
We were made in God’s image!
Think about that for a moment. That means the person you are trying to become is less like the viral tik tok account you follow and more like Jesus. It’s less about trying to keep up with the couple across the street, and more about considering how our life compares to the example Jesus gives us.
Now that might sound counter productive. Didn’t we just raise the bar really high!
But that’s why we need to consider the next step.
Step 2: Change the focus!
The problem with staring at ourselves in the mirror is that we will never measure up to the ‘better’ person we think we could be. And it doesn’t matter how much positive vibes you give yourself, even if you achieve the ten different things you want to achieve in the next 12 months, you’ll just have another ten things you want to change by the time you get there.
The answer is to change your focus.
2 Corinthians 3:18 says that as we “contemplate the Lord’s glory” we “are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory.”
You can stare at yourself in the mirror and speak positive words over your day until you are blue in the face. The problem is that the more you stare at your own life the more you’ll see the problems and defects. It’s like a new house. It looks beautiful at first, but the more you live there the more you notice the cracks in the plaster, the peeling paint, the chip in the door.
If you really want to make a difference, change your focus. Look to God. Contemplate his glory by which we are transformed.
In Exodus 34, after Moses had been in the presence of God on Mount Sinai, he came down from the mountain and it is said that “he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the Lord.”
Taking time each day to read the Bible and look to God in prayer is the single greatest catalyst for positive change in your life. Because in those few precious moments, you change your focus and look to the one who transforms us from ‘glory to glory’.
Step 3: Take it one change at a time.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to be a better you. It’s actually part of how God created us to be and He is constantly bringing change to our lives and encouraging us to live in such a way that leads towards a better future.
Once we have the right picture of ourselves and the right focus, then we can allow God to begin to do a good work in us.
So how can we make good steps today towards the future that God has for us tomorrow.
If you were to get on an airplane today at Leeds Bradford airport and fly due East (or West) around the earth, you would arrive back at exactly the same point. However, if you were to change your direction by just 1 degree, you would end up in the south of Spain. That 1 degree is the difference between a summer holiday in north Leeds or the Costa Del Sol! That’s a big difference, just because of 1 degree of change.
Change doesn’t have to be everything all at once. Just change one thing today and keep doing that until it becomes a habit.
Here’s some suggestions to start your new tomorrow. Remember – just do one! Don’t try to do them all at the same time.
- Change one meal a day for something healthier.
- Watch one hour less TV or even swap the TV for a book!
- Choose to spend just 10mins every morning with your bible. (You could buy a Bible in a Year and work through it)
- Drink a glass of lemon water when you wake up.
- Put your phone away after 10pm.
- Sign up for a Community group or start attending a Prayer meeting.
- Buy a book on that thing you’ve always wanted to learn, and read it!
- Delete those games off your phone or even your Social Media!!
- Borrow an instrument and start taking lessons (use YouTube for some free stuff).
- Go for a walk every day.
What’s one thing you could change today that would change your tomorrow?
Start with Step 1.
Then move to Step 2.
Then when you’re looking at things right, you can begin to change your life, one change at a time.