I have always maintained that nearly everyone values good health and would love to have an increased sense of well being in their life. Health is easy to define – perhaps absence of disease is the base level but adequate fitness and optimal energy are possibly the most representative of good health. Simplistic I realise but indisputable.
Wellness, however is something else. For the purpose of this short article, let’s call it high life satisfaction on a daily basis, and good resilience, or the ability to deal with and bounce back from inevitable setbacks. We also know that meaningful relationships, engagement in our work, positive emotions and a sense of achievement contribute greatly to this ideal of “wellness”. Much of my work focuses on helping coaches to work with people to create a “vision” of what they want. Ie to help them with the first step of imagining what their life could be like if they were to make changes. This is valuable work and really the first step towards positive change.
But then we have to look closely at the things that stop people from getting what they want. The obstacles or barriers to change which come in all shapes and sizes but often are described as a “lack” of something. So the next step is to work out how we can get more of the element that is missing – be it time, money, knowledge, motivation. And this is where the work of coaching comes in. I love the energy that comes out of bringing a group of people together and discussing the “Things that get in the Way” and watching their ability to brainstorm solutions. A great coach or facilitator can witness this process and know that – provided the person who wishes to make the change is still in the driving seat – the support of others can spur that person on to action and positive belief in themselves. I believe that addressing the barriers to change is the crucial and sometimes difficult part of any change journey.
I would love to hear what you feel are your barriers to positive change in your life?