Although you can make big changes in your love life at any time of year, we seem to think about it more naturally when a new year starts. We often take stock of what our last year was like and think about what didn’t work out so well, and what we’d like to improve.
We may even take it one step further by thinking about what we could be doing differently to improve our chances of getting what we want.
Whether you’re looking for Mr. Right or just want to be treated better by men, this is an important step for you. Last week we talked about the 5 stages of change and particularly the precontemplation stage, the first stage in which you know something isn’t working but don’t have a clear understanding of what’s wrong or what to do about it. Today we will discuss the next step, the contemplation stage.
What It Really Means to Contemplate Change
What is the contemplation stage? It’s the stage where you face your conflicted feelings. Part of you wants to become more aware of your problem and how changing your own behavior may resolve it, while another part of you wants to avoid those tough issues.
When something in your love life isn’t working for you, it can be hard to tell if it’s your problem or if it’s somebody else’s. For example, maybe your friends or family are telling you that they have noticed that you have a pattern of chasing guys or falling for guys who aren’t that into you. Maybe you’re getting sick of crash and burn relationships or being alone, but you don’t see how you’re contributing to the problem. Or maybe you realized that you find fault with every guy who comes your way, no matter how nice he is.
You may also have mixed feelings about changing things about yourself. When anyone suggests a different approach, you might even feel resentful, asking yourself things like:
“Why should I settle for someone I don’t love?”
“Why do I have to be passive and wait for a man to ask me out?”
“But he doesn’t meet my list of criteria!”
Whatever the pattern, if more than one person you respect sees it as a contributing problem in your life, it’s probably worth giving a second look. It could help you make better decisions on your process to improving your love life.
It can be difficult to feel like you might be doing anything to sabotage your chances at love and happiness. Nobody likes to think they have a problem. Admitting you might be wrong about the way you’ve been approaching a situation for a long time isn’t an easy thing to do. But don’t worry – after awhile it can become more obvious and less intimidating.
How to Start Changing Your Life Today
Believe it or not, many people are afraid of change, even if it’s the change they want. In order to move to the next stage, the determination stage, the important questions to ask yourself are:
“What has helped my love life in the past?
“What hasn’t worked for me?”
“What are the pros and cons of keeping things the way they are now?”
“What are the pros and cons of change?”
Your answers to these questions can serve as your guide to help you decide whether you’re ready to take the next step in the change process. You might get distracted in this stage because your emotions are running high. Do your best to keep in mind the issues you want to improve in your life without getting overwhelmed or too distracted by other outside problems or goals. In this stage, we are focusing on whether to change your perspective on your love life to enable productive change.
Preparation for Step 3: Finding Clarity
The clearer you get on whether you need and want a change, the easier it will be to build up the determination to get it done. I know, it’s easier said than done for many of us. Actually doing the work of change takes an inner strength to follow through. But don’t worry –you can follow through on your goals. Watch for next week’s blog on step 3 in the process of change, determination.
Over the coming 3 weeks, we’ll walk you through the rest of the stages of change, so that you can visualize where you can be in 2018 no matter what problems you face.
Looking for a step-by-step guide to walk you through your journey of change in this new year? Be one of the first to sign up for my soon-to-be released short course: How to Become Your Own Brand of Sexy in 5 Simple Steps to get the help you have been waiting for.