Why We Don't Want to Get Better


Occasionally, the self-aware folks will notice that part of themselves doesn't want things to change or get better. That part, as confusing as it is to the rest of the person, wants to keep things as they are. The experience typically includes a complex constellation of anger, fear, comfort, and fatigue regarding the status quo. If we don't recognize this directly in ourselves, then we can spot it in behaviors we don't like to talk about. We might put off accepting a new opportunity or avoid communicating the things that might give way to a path towards healing. We might keep lying to ourselves about the limits of others or keep trying to tell our stories in a way less painful but also less accurate.

I'll publicly admit a very light version of this common human behavior for the sake of example. I notice when I get an inquiry to set up a session, I'll stall for a bit and play on facebook. I know exactly when I'm doing this and ask myself to explain. The answer is consistent: Once I say yes to what I want to say yes to, I become accountable for my own success and have to remain accountable each day for my own well being. The stalling is an attempt, albeit temporary, to put off things getting better and to stay in a child-like state of irresponsibility. I absolutely want to build my practice and work with more people. I spend hours connecting with communities in various ways in order to offer my services. In those moments that I shy away from the invitation to do the work I love, I push against my own desire to avoid the risk of saying yes to change.

So, why don't we want to change? Why don't we want things to get better?

Because change is:

scary

hard

annoying

demanding

painful

unknown

frustrating

exhilarating

irritating

boring

confusing

expensive

surprising

out of control

uncomfortable

sad

risky

lonely

required

not gauranteed

fumbly

panic inducing

alarming

necessary

Suffice to say, change is not fun. The pain of the chrysalis is anticipated by the caterpillar and quickly forgotten by the butterfly.

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