All real change starts with the man (or woman) in the mirror; yet it’s much easier to criticize those things outside of ourselves that we believe should change.
Change is difficult. I don’t think there’s anyone alive who will deny this fact. Knowing so, the most honorable thing we can do is to do our personal best while allowing others to be themselves.
If your child slurps his cereal, your spouse is notoriously late, your parents are intrusive, and your boss is the world’s biggest jerk; can you really change it? You can try. You can upset yourself with your constant attention to what you don’t like. Or you can change yourself.
You can change your perception of these things, the way you respond and your willingness to let it bother you in the first place. You can change your thoughts, your attitude, your tendencies toward judgment and your tolerance level. You can change by taking full responsibility for your own thoughts, feelings and actions.
Even in situations of great turmoil, such as the genocide in Darfur and homelessness in America, you can do something far more effective than complaining and demanding others to change. You can change. You can let compassion and personal accountability replace the judgment and ridicule in your heart. You can take an active role in contributing to the solution by giving the world the gift of your best self.
You can practice what you preach: unity, unconditional love, education and knowledge sharing, generosity, peace, understanding, charity, tolerance, sympathy and forgiveness. When we all decide to do our best to be the change we want to see in the world rather than focusing on what’s wrong with everyone and everything else; there will be nothing left to judge or change.
Such an ideal may not come around anytime soon, but you can begin to develop it in your own heart and mind. That is the only place change can ever really start. So, the next time you’re busting at the seams with desire to tell someone else what they “should” do differently; turn that pointed finger back at yourself.
Ask yourself what changes you might make. Consider the ways in which you could contribute to the solution.
Don’t aim to change the world. Aim to change yourself and the world will benefit immensely.
Photo credit: Alex Calderon
More Self Improvement Blog Posts on Change
- 15 Ways to Get Unstuck and Change Your Life
- How to See Yourself More Clearly and Rise to the Next Level
Please share this post to show your support: