10 Mistakes to Avoid When Creating Change in Your Life

10 Mistakes to Avoid When Creating Change in Your Life

When you want to create change in your life, work, or business, it is important to be aware of common mistakes that many people make. 

That knowledge and awareness can help you proactively avoid making those mistakes as you navigate the change process, which is a great way to set yourself up to succeed.  

To help you get started with that, make sure you aren't making any of the 10 common mistakes below. If you are, address these things proactively so they do not sabotage your progress and results. 

10 Mistakes to Avoid When Creating Change in Your Life


1. Trying to change too much at once

It is the accumulation of small steps taken consistently and persistently that will get you from where you are to where you want to be. So taking on too much all at once is counterproductive. It also increases feelings of stress, and overwhelm, and can reduce your effectiveness. You are more likely to succeed with the changes you want to create if you phase them in a manageable way and pace yourself. Create a solid action plan and break it down into small steps. Step by step is the way to go!

2. Expecting change to happen quickly, easily, and in a linear way.

In a world that wants "now, fast, and easy", it comes as a shock to many that creating change successfully takes time, hard work, commitment and patience. Change is a process. And it isn't a linear path. There are many things to navigate along the way, including challenges, setbacks, and mistakes. So it is important to set your expectations appropriately.  And when setbacks and mistakes happen, don't let them derail you. Instead, learn the lesson, apply the learning and move on.

3. Not simplifying commitments and your schedule

Creating change successfully requires time, effort, and focus, over and above what you already need to navigate your day-to-day responsibilities in your life, work, or business. So, if your schedule is already packed with commitments and you are constantly busy then it is going to be very hard for you to commit the necessary time, attention, and effort to achieve the specific outcomes you desire. Simplify your commitments and schedule and put boundaries in place to protect your time.  

4. Not focusing on the human side of change

When we embark on a path of change we spend a lot of time on what we need to do - logistical factors like goal setting, planning, and tasks. But that is only half the story when it comes to creating change successfully. It is you who needs to execute the goals and plans so who you are "being" is just as important as what you are "doing". It is important to assess human factors like behaviour, habits, mindset, and emotions. They drive how you show up and heavily influence your progress and results. But they are often totally overlooked when creating change. Identify and foster the behaviours, habits, mindset, and emotions that will help you create and navigate the path of change successfully. 

5. Not creating enough reserves

Creating change often requires way more reserves than you think. What I mean by reserves are things like reserves of time, money, support, energy, contingencies, etc. Identify the reserves that will give you a safety net and take action to put them in place.    

6. Not creating support

Having support is invaluable when you are trying to change something in your life, work, or business. Having a sounding board, accountability partner, mastermind group, mentor, coach, or trusted friend can help you progress faster, easier, and with fewer mistakes than trying to do it all alone. Plus, if the going gets tough having support can give your motivation and morale a valuable boost. Identify the support you would benefit from and put it in place.  

7. Not identifying what you need to learn

Creating change successfully often requires new skills or knowledge of some kind. Yet, people often launch into creating change without working out what they need to learn or what new skills they need to set themselves up to succeed. But this one thing could be the difference between achieving your desired outcomes or not. Identify what you need to learn or skills you need to develop to navigate the path of change successfully. 

8. Asking the wrong people for advice and not seeking expert help

Are you turning to the right people for advice on the change you want to create? Do they have experience with the change you want to create or are they an expert in that field?  Always ask yourself if the person you are listening to is qualified to advise you on the change you are making. Choose wisely who you listen to.  

It can take you weeks, months, and even years of struggle if what you are working on is something you have never done before or not in your skillset. Seeking out expert help can speed things up, reduce mistakes, and avoid wasting time and effort going around in circles trying to figure it all out on your own.

9. Not having a system to keep yourself on track

Goals and action plans aren’t enough on their own to create change successfully. That is because change is a process and without a mechanism to keep yourself on track as you move forward you risk progress being slow, getting derailed, or even not achieving the outcomes you desire at all. Identify and implement a system to review progress and update plans regularly. It will help you manage the change process effectively, keep you on the right track, and set you up to succeed. 

10. Not prioritising self care 

Creating change requires extra cognitive, mental, and physical energy, over and above what you need in your daily life, work, or business. Plus, research shows that people who prioritise their health and wellbeing are more effective. As creating change successfully depends on your personal effectiveness, not prioritising self-care is a big mistake. A car can’t drive to a destination if it has no fuel or is poorly maintained. The same applies to you. Implement a solid self-care plan.    

Use these 10 points as a checklist. Proactively put things in place to avoid making these common mistakes as you navigate the path of change and to set yourself up to succeed.

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