The A-C-T Formula for Change
By Michael Angier
You can't change what you don't acknowledge, and it's hard to change
what you don't measure.
Few people would say they don't want to make changes in their life. No
matter how good things might be going, we want to make them better.
And yet, we resist change-sometimes consciously and often
unconsciously. We SAY we want to change but we don't always do what we
need to do to make those changes.
There are many reasons for this. I will focus on three key reasons why
we don't create the changes we wish to make.
We need to ACT
The genesis of real change, at least the kind that we choose as opposed
to the change that just happens to us, is to accept what is. We must first
acknowledge the situation in order to do anything about it. It sounds so
obvious and so simple, but we often overlook this step.
All too often, we think things are better than they really are. We're a
bit too familiar with the problem and we justify it by saying that it's
not all that bad.
The first step is to acknowledge what it is that needs changing.
We don't need to make it wrong, we don't need to defend it, we just need
to say, "OK, this is what's so and I want it to be different."
Our power is in our ability to decide.
The next question is, HOW do we want it different? Sometimes we know
what we DON'T want, but we aren't sure what we DO want.
Try this: take the problem and reverse it.
Let's say you think you weigh too much. The problem is being
overweight. That's the truth and it's important to acknowledge this fact.
But it's also important to redirect your attention on what you WANT. You
want a fit, trim, healthy body. It's also good to get clear on why you
want this. Your reasons are powerful motivators for doing what you need to
do to get the job done.
I see many people who aren't willing to acknowledge their debt, their
weight, their lack of success in business, their relationship problems and
more. They're unhappy but yet unwilling to define and face the problems
that are often so obvious to everyone else. Denial is a crafty affliction
and we all have it in one degree or another.
Once we accept our situation and choose our objective, we can begin
to make changes.
A key strategy for success is to track your progress. It's hard to
change what you don't measure.
Allow me to share with you a personal experience. I've been heavier
than I'd like to be for several years. I didn't have much trouble
accepting the fact I was overweight, but I also didn't seem to remain
consistent about weight loss and maintenance.
This year, I made a new commitment to tracking my progress regardless
of the results. Each week at the same time and on the same scale, I weigh
myself and record it in a spreadsheet. In addition, I also track three
things daily: whether or not I exercised, whether or not I consumed any
alcohol (empty calories) and whether or not I had a low-calorie day (below
2000). It only takes 20 seconds to enter either a checkmark or red X for
I've been meticulous about it now for nine weeks and I'm glad to say I
weigh 9 kilos less than I did when I started. I remain steadfast in
recording this information every day.
I've done this in my business as well. Over the past year, I've never
been better at monitoring the key metrics that relate to our progress. In
the process, I tripled my business and quadrupled our profits. I think
there's a connection.
If you want to make meaningful change in your life, get real about
what is, get clear on what you want and then track it. Record where you
are and your progress in making the change. In doing so, you'll find
yourself making changes with less effort and achieving more success.
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