The Principles of Change: 2

The Principles of Change: 2

 

Principle no 2: Change is a process.

This means you need to be very, very patient with yourself.

It goes a bit like this…(thank you to a client who sent us this poem):

 

Autobiography in Five Short Chapters

by Portia Nelson, 1977

 

Chapter One

 

I walk down the street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I fall in.

I am lost …. I am helpless.

It isn’t my fault.

It takes forever to find a way out.

 

Chapter Two

 

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I pretend I don’t see it.

I fall in again.

I can’t believe I am in this same place.

But, it isn’t my fault.

It still takes a long time to get out.

 

Chapter Three

 

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I see it is there.

I still fall in … it’s a habit … but,

my eyes are open.

I know where I am.

It is my fault.

I get out immediately.

 

Chapter Four

 

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I walk around it.

 

Chapter Five

 

I walk down another street.

 

Somebody (Eric Berne, I think it was) said “Confession without change is a game.” By “game” he means, a pattern of interaction with a predictable response. It is the opposite of change. An example would be “Yes, but…”:

Somebody complains to you of their misfortune. You leap in with some suggestions about how they may, quite practically, assist themselves. They say, “Yes, but…” They stay the same.

Also noteworthy here is the victim/rescuer dynamic. It is linked to a third aspect, the persecutor. Next moment you might be cross because that person did not take your well-meaning advice. Basically, everyone is stuck.

You can stay as you are for the rest of your life, or you can change.

Check out Games people play and I’m OK, you’re OK – very useful books about staying in your adult self during interactions with others.

See other Creative Contributions (like poetry) from our clients.