5 Questions to Ask When You Want to Change

I don’t eat crab, so I’ve never seen them prepared. But I’m told they’re often cooked alive.

Ugh! What an agonizing way to go!

I wonder why the crabs don’t try to escape the pot. 

I would!

Well, it turns out that the crabs do try to climb out, the ones on the top anyway, but they’re rarely successful.

Why? 

Because the crabs at the bottom pull them back down!

Does your life ever feel that way?

No matter how hard you try to change, something (or someone) keeps dragging you back down. You can’t get ahead, and now you’ve stopped believing you will.

Wait!

Don’t give up yet. In fact, don’t give up at all!

I know change can be challenging. It takes a lot of determination to move from one circumstance to another or to change something about yourself.

And you may be struggling. Maybe you feel impatient. Perhaps you’re questioning the value of a particular change.

1. Are you stuck in a “pot”?

Like those crabs, we end up in situations we didn’t ask for. They’re unpleasant, hurtful, and perhaps even dangerous. And we feel stuck.

Let’s call those situations our “pots.”

We don’t know how to climb out, and the water’s getting hot!

Step one: Identify your pot(s)

List the challenges you currently face: debt, addiction, chronic illness, an unhappy relationship, legal trouble, etc. 

You may be in multiple pots because one situation can lead to another. Some are simmering, some are heating up, and some are boiling hot!

Step two: Acknowledge how you got there

Not all your “pots” are your fault. Other people make choices, and those choices affect you. And before you know it, you’ve landed in a pot.

But some of those choices likely are your fault.

You jumped into a relationship prematurely.

You made a risky business decision.

You invested poorly.

You broke the law.

Whatever it is, you don’t get out of the pot without first admitting why you’re there!

Or why you’re still there. Because, after all, it’s also a choice to stay. And you are solely responsible for climbing out!

2. What will life be like if you don’t get out?

The second question I ask myself is, “What will happen if I don’t get out?” I ask this because I don’t want to get comfortable!

You may wonder, how can anybody get comfortable in a boiling pot of water?

You’d be surprised. 

Millions (literally) of people are tolerating their situations. They settle down to the bottom of the pot and slowly cook to death.

Why?

They focused on how hard it was to change instead of asking themselves how hard life would continue to be if they didn’t.

That’s the key. 

Focus on what you lose by staying in the pot instead of how much effort it takes to get out.

Focus on the fact that you are boiling to death!

If you wait too long, the fear of change will immobilize you. And what seemed so intolerable at first will become all you know.

3. What kind of crabs do you hang out with?

Change is easier when you have support—people who believe in you.

But if you hang out with other bottom-dwellers (aka others who’ve also settled), it’s a giant party at the bottom of the pot!

Okay, not really.

But there are people in your life who talk the talk, but…

They’re still at the bottom.

And some don’t want you to reach the top.

You see, they gave up long ago. Misery likes company, too, so keeping you down is in their best interests.

They may do that with snide remarks when you attempt to better yourself, followed with “I’m just kidding. Can’t you take a joke?”

Or worse, they insult you. They make fun of your efforts, to your face or behind your back. But you find out.

They shame you for wanting to rise. 

They label you.

They may even shun you.

If this is happening, it’s time to make new friends. 

Look for people who have similar goals. They don’t want to stay in that pot any longer than you do!

Or they’ve made it out, and they’re reaching back in to offer a hand. 

They’ve done the hard work. They know what it takes, and they know it’s achievable. After all, it’s the doers who get out.

4. What beliefs are keeping you from climbing out?

Sometimes, the person who holds us back the most is staring back at us in the mirror.

Has life knocked you down too many times?

And now you have beliefs that are holding you down?

Beliefs about yourself, your reputation, your lack of know-how, your lack of support…and on it goes.

Many of those beliefs aren’t accurate, though they may feel that way. 

For example, suppose you try to talk to your husband about something you’re unhappy about, which turns into an argument. In that case, you may no longer believe in trying.

Or you believe you’ll never get ahead financially because it’s too late to get that education you missed out on. It’s just too much effort, too much money, etc. 

Those faulty beliefs keep you stuck.

If you let them.

Or you can learn to “rewire” your brain (find out how here).

It’s possible to replace faulty beliefs with accurate ones—beliefs that support, not hinder, you.

Beliefs that tell us that, even if we don’t know how to change right now, we can learn. We can get help.

We can climb out.

5. What will your future be like when you do climb out?

Motivation—without it, you aren’t going anywhere.

But not all motives are the same.

Let’s say I want to lose weight—that’s my pot.

And no matter what I’ve tried in the past, it just hasn’t worked. The weight comes off, and then, inevitably, it comes back.

If I want to be rid of that weight for good, I need to know why.

Why is it so crucial for me to lose this weight?

Am I just trying to fit into a particular outfit?

Okay, that’s fine. But what happens when I’ve achieved that? What keeps me motivated to continue with the restrictive diet or the challenging exercise routine now that my goal has been accomplished?

Nothing.

So, bite by bite, I eat my way back to the bottom of the pot, telling myself, “I’ll get back on my diet tomorrow. I’ve lost this once. I can lose it again. Right after I have this slice of pizza.”

To stay motivated beyond my initial goal, I must have a bigger purpose—like having a body I love waking up to every morning!

If I focus on loving a toned and fit body, I’m more likely to stick with healthy food choices until they’re second nature.

In other words, clearly envision what life will be like outside the pot. 

What will a toned, fit body allow me to do? How will I treat myself (and others) differently? What will I have the confidence to do that I don’t currently have?

The more detailed your vision is, the more energy you put into getting out.

So, how do you learn to believe that life can be better?

Find the expert for your specific “pot.”

That’s the person who’s been where you are and knows what you need to do because they did it.

And it worked.

And now they’ve helped hundreds (maybe thousands) of people get out.

Cling to their faith and confidence that change is possible… until you have your own. Believe them when they say it’s absolutely worth the hard work… until you believe it too.

P.S. If you’re “pot” is around improving your relationship with your husband (or yourself), I’m your expert. Reach out to me, and let’s get started today.

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