Awareness: How to Embrace Change and End Suffering
2 min read

Awareness: How to Embrace Change and End Suffering

For a long time, I didn't want to change.

Change was hard, uncomfortable, and scary.

It was hard because it required effort, discipline and work. It was uncomfortable because it forced me to confront the things I ran away from. To explore feelings I didn't want to feel and to leave behind the comfort of the pain I knew. It was scary because I didn't know what lessons my exploration would yield. What I'd have to sacrifice to change and what responsibility successful change would entail.

So, I didn't want to change.

If You Don't Want to, You Won't Change

Most people don't want to change. I guess you didn't want to change in the past - maybe you still don't want to change now.

Nothing can make you change if you don't want to. Which is the problem of not wanting to change. No course, book or coach will change you, if you are unwilling to change yourself. No well-meaning advice, harsh criticism or motivational speech will change you if you don't want to change.

The consequence of not wanting to change seems simple: you don't change. But that is only the surface of the problem.

The deeper problem is that if you don't change you'll suffer.

Your Unwillingness to Change Causes Suffering

For one, because you have problems. Solving those problems requires you to change. You can try to change "the system", try to change other people or blame them for your situation but this won't fix your problems. Sometimes it just increases your fixation on the problem and your frustration about not solving it.

Furthermore, the world is constantly changing. In fact, it's changing right this second. This means that whatever works for you now might not work in the future. It also means that even if life is going great for you right now, it likely won't stay that way. Sooner or later, the world changes on you and if you don't change with it, you'll suffer.

Lastly, your problems cause suffering for other people. Even if you successfully manage your problems others might suffer from them. Do you really want to be the cause of other people's suffering?

Meditate on This Suffering

Once you truly internalize how your unwillingness to change affects you and the people around you, you might want to change. Of course, this shift won't come suddenly. It certainly can. But it will most likely only come after you hit rock bottom or went through a period of intense suffering: a breakup, the death of a loved one or some other earth- and life-shattering event. Is this really what you want to wait for?

The Will to Change

So, the main takeaways is to become aware of how much suffering your unwillingness to change causes. The more you meditate on this, the more your thoughts will erode your unwillingness to change. Eventually, this erosion will cause your unwillingness to break.

This is when you say "ENOUGH!", stop believing your excuses and step outside of the denial you were in.

This can be the moment of transformation and change you've been avoiding for so long.

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