Sunday, 14 April 2013

After speaking at length (and at supersonic speed) all day Friday and more on Sunday, with my dear friend, Jane, I have a few thoughts on the process of change.

There are distinct phases in any person's journey to changing behaviour and these manifest as:

  1. Denial - you don't think anything is wrong and nothing needs changing or addressing.  You are happy with the status quo
  2. Contemplation - you think there may be some areas that could do with a little improvement, you're open to the idea of change
  3. Preparation - you are liking the idea of change more and more and are taking steps to plan how you might go about it
  4. Action - you are ready to make the change and you are putting your plans into action,  possibly tentatively at first
  5. Relapse - you have hit a stumbling block and messed up.  You have not undone all your good work, you have just slipped up
  6. Living it - you have made the change permanent and relapses are rare - if they do occur they are totally conscious and under your control
Now, it is really important to understand that stage 6 does not shunt you straight back to stage 1.  
If you relapse, it only shoves you back 1 stage.  You don't have to start climbing the mountain again just because you fell off the wagon.  You just have to jump up, dust yourself down and keep on from where you left off. 

As I have said before, it isn't all or nothing.  One chocolate bar doesn't mean you've ruined everything.  One missed workout doesn't mean you shouldn't ever bother again.  

Learn from what made you slip and move on!

Jane gave me some alternative versions of change which I love!  they go something like this:

  1. Unconscious incompetence - similar to denial - you don't know what you're doing wrong, or even that there is anything wrong
  2. Conscious Incompetence - similar to contemplation - you are aware that something isn't working and that something could be done about it
  3. Conscious Competence - similar to action - you have planned and prepared and you are making a change - it takes your concentration and awareness to do it
  4. Unconscious Competence - similar to living it - you have made the change and it has become second nature to live like this
The difficulty most people have, when trying to make a change of any type is going from contemplation and preparation to action and not giving up when they hit relapse.

In other words, people find it easy to slip between Conscious Incompetence and Conscious Competence but it is hard to move into Unconscious Competence.

For example, someone who goes regularly to a weight loss group will rely on the rules and support that group gives them to achieve their goals.  They will be in the Action stage or the Conscious Competence stage.  If they slip up, they will have hit Relapse and may give up.  They will have moved back to Conscious Incompetence - aware they have messed up but finding it hard to recover.

They are finding it hard to move onto the Living it stage - the Unconscious Competence stage - because they are reliant on the rules that the group gives them, unable to think for themselves.

The only way to get yourself into the Unconscious Competence, where you are Living it, where your new behaviour has become second nature, is to get there yourself, without help!

This is my aim with KLossMyRules.  I gve you a set of starter rules that get you going.  Along your path to success, you discuss regularly with someone what is working and going well and what you are finding tricky (these are the KLossMyRules Laws).  These insights allow you to adapt the starter rules to fit your life so that you become in charge of your own personal journey to change.

After all, you're not like anyone else.  

You are you.  

You are unique and what works for one person will not work for another.  

So you adapt the starter rules and make them your own, thus weaning yourself off support from an external source - becoming reliant on your own skills and strength!

Voila!  Living it!  Unconscious Competence!

Thanks, Jane, for a monster chat!  Great to see you!

Krish x


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