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    Personal Change Takes Time
    Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD posted:
    Personal change takes time — and it's filled with mistakes and 're-dos.' So, if you have committed yourself to some personal change and are struggling to make it happen, take heart. You are not alone. And, failed attempts do not mean failure. They are simply part of the process. Keep trying. Think about your situation. Get to know your thoughts, feelings, and motivations. Learn from them. Practice seeing your struggles in daily life, and look for healthier ways of coping. In the meantime, also give yourself the space to be human — to make mistakes and learn from them. With patience, forgiveness, and persistence, you can create the change you want.

    In what ways can you relate to this perspective about making personal changes? How have you related to yourself as you've struggled with this? Have you been forgiving of yourself as you've tried to make changes? Have you been forgiving of others as they have tried to change?

    If you would like to read more in detail about this topic in my The Art of Relationships blog, click here.

    Dr. Becker-Phelps's discussions and her responses in those discussions are for general educational purposes only. If you need help for an emotional or behavioral problem, please seek the assistance of a psychologist or other qualified mental health professional.

    dfromspencer responded:
    Personal change takes time, in my case, maybe forever? I keep trying to do things right, say the right things, yet sometimes I still don't get it right. I've been trying to be more patient, more understanding, it is still a work in progress. I have indeed forgiven myself for failures. If I didn't, this would never work for me. So many times I have failed, yet I keep insisting I get it right. I have to, I cannot, nor do I want to go backwards!

    I quit smoking, again. This time, I will get it right. So far, it has only been ten days. I have wanted to start back smoking, then I remember my commitment to change myself. I am already feeling better about myself, and yet I know I can do better, yet! The nervousness I used to feel from being impatient, has eased up conciderably. I think its because I have taken the time to ease my brain into it? I used the self talk for two weeks befor I even attempted to quit, and it worked!!!

    My patience with the V.A. has improved, also. I have yet to receive an appointment to see my councellor, but I don't let it get to me. I take it as is, and go on with my day.

    I even started an exercise routine. I have stuck with it for three weeks, so far. And so far, so good!!! I not only feel better, I look better! As my breathing progressed, so did my workouts. My patience with this is truly amazing. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would/could do this again? And yet, here I am working a split routine, upper body one day, with abs thrown in, and lower body the next day, with abs thrown in. My bowflex is taking a beating, LOL!!! I feel wonderful, once again!

    Thanks to you, Dr. Leslie, I feel as if I could take on the world, once more!!! I promise you, I will keep practicing your methods till the wheels fall off!!! One day, hopefully soon, I will indeed change for the better???

    Thank you, Dr. Leslie, I can't thank you enough!!!

    rohvannyn replied to dfromspencer's response:
    Sounds like you've already changed for the better, Dennis. Keep it up and the progress will continue. I'll write more later but wanted to throw this in for now. Also, good job with quitting smoking. My spouse has been smoke free for a year and a half, did it for thirty years, and I'm so proud.

    'Your focus determines your reality.' --QGJ
    dfromspencer replied to rohvannyn's response:
    Hi Roh,

    Thanks! Yeah, I smoked for over 40 years, its time to quit!!! Each day gets a little easier.

    Good for your S.O.!!!

    I have to leave town for a job, helping my brother. Not sure when I will return, but, don't let that stop you! I like hearing from you, you are smart, and funny, a combination I admire!!!

    Talk to ya soon (sort of)!!!


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