- Making Changes at Work:
- How To Create Lasting Change And Achieve
Greater Success At Work
- By M.J. Ryan
This year, Im going
to get that raise.
I will get my desk organized once and for all.
Ill have better work/life balance.
Ill start that business Ive always dreamed
At some point weve all
vowed to make some big change similar to the resolutions
above. But by the time the rosy blush of good intentions wears
off, the resolution gets pushed aside. Not because we dont
still long to have what we want, but because we just dont
know how to change.
Changing your behavior takes
Our brains have enormous plasticity,
meaning they can create new cells and pathways. But our brains
create strong tendencies to do the same thing over and over.
The brain cells that fire together
wire together. Meaning, they have a strong tendency to run the
same program the next time. Thats why lasting change takes
lots of practice; youve got to create a pathway to the
According to many brain scientists
it can take six to nine months to change your behavior. Yet people
continue to waste so much money on those seven-day miracle programs
and then wonder why they have not experienced lasting change
and greater success at work.
Heres The Top 3 Reasons
Why Many Business Entrepreneurs and Executives Fail To Change
Their Behavior & Achieve Greater Business Success:
1. Theyve not yet realized that the change
process is not about getting rid of bad habits. The pathway to
your current behavior is there for life. Instead you want to
focus on creating new, more positive habits that will positively
affect your business. Even stopping doing something, like procrastinating,
is really about creating a good new habit, starting sooner.
2. They fail to put external reminders in place,
at least in the beginning. Unless you have a trigger from the
outside like an email reminder, or a buddy its very likely
youll keep defaulting to the old behavior because its
automatic. Thats also why its so important to be
willing to start over no matter how often you blow it or get
3. Theyre not concrete enough about what they
want and are unrealistic about what they can reasonably ask themselves
to change. Heres what an executive client of mine said
he wanted to change in three months: to be more positive
with co-workers, staff and colleagues, to be more creative and
productive and to take better care of myself. How
about create world peace while youre at it? I replied.
And what does `more mean anyway? As this client demonstrated,
we expect too much of ourselves and we expect to change overnight.
When that doesnt happen, we resign ourselves to staying
the same, convinced that we are hopeless, weak, or unmotivated.
Which makes us even more stuck in a rut.
To truly change your behavior
and achiever greater business success requires three things:
desire, intent, and persistence. You have to identify what you
desire enough to be willing to stick to. You have to make SMART
goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound)
like leave the computer at the office and dont look
at the Blackberry after 9 rather than having more
balance. You need determination and persistence to try
again no matter how many times you blow it. Most importantly
you need to avoid my top 10 common resolution pitfalls.
My Top 10 List of Resolution
1. Being vague about what you want
2. Not making a serious commitment
3. Excuse-makingno time, wrong time, dog ate homework
4. Unwilling to go through the awkward phase
5. Not setting up a tracking and reminder system
6. Expecting perfection and falling into guilt, shame,
7. Trying to change by yourself
8. Telling yourself self-limiting rut stories
9. Not having backup plans
10. Turning slip-ups to give-ups
Armed with a new attitude and
behavior, you can create lasting change and achieve greater success
at work. When you have this invaluable tool in your arsenal,
youll be empowered to bring anything you want into reality.
Youll become the master of your fate rather than the victim
of old choices.