stages of personal change + the unexpected shape of success
You broke your resolution. That’s ok.
You are not a loser.
Regression is a stage of personal change.
The first stage: Precontemplation.
When you’re living in the dark.
You have yet to come to consciousness
Or admit that anything’s wrong.
Denial is not just a river…yadda yadda.
The second stage: contemplation.
You are aware of the problem and ponder it.
(See you ponder. Ponder, ponder.)
The third stage: preparation/determination.
You’re committed, dammit! You vow
To shake the world.
The fourth stage: action/willpower.
You’re changing! You are! Except maybe
Not so much
(This is often the shortest of the stages.)
The fifth stage: maintenance.
You embed the change into your life
And avoid relapse.
The sixth stage: um, relapse.
The cigarette. The cake. The inappropriate lover.
(Don’t judge the ones who sin
differently than you do.)
Take a breath.
Figure out what triggered the behavior.
You are not
back where you started
But somewhere higher
With a deepened understanding of yourself.
Success is not a straight line.
It is a spiral.
And the spiral is the ancient symbol
And the divine.