The Best Moment to Change Is…?

You might think I’m going to say ‘right NOW’…

But nope.

In fact, I’m not even saying that you should, need to, or ought to change.

To me, you’re fine just the way you are (cue Billy Joel)

No, the only reason for you or anyone to change is if there’s a desire, a strong will – an INTENT behind it.

Unless you’re driven to change, it’s better not to try.

Like a smoker who says he wants to quit but doesn’t – that means the wanting is just cerebral, it’s in the mind.

You THINK you want to, but there’s no intent behind it, no genuine and all-consuming WANT.

Wait for that, and then change – you’ll find it goes automatically.

Like that day I went to talk to my abbot:

“Master, I want to quit smoking”.

He looked at me.

“Are you quite serious? You really want to?”

“Yes. I do”.

“Ok”, he said.

“Then you’ve just quit”.

I blinked, stumped.

“That simple?”

“Yes”, he beamed at me.

“Oh, well ok”, I said. “I’ll just go and smoke my last cigarette, and then I’ll be done with it”, as I moved towards the door. “Thank you”.

“Nonono”, he said.

“You’ve already smoked your last one”.

I thought for a moment, and saw what he had done there.

And I walked out of the room free – no craving, no withdrawal symptoms, no relapse, nothing.

It was that easy, because I really REALLY wanted to.

So if the moment you have the intent is the best moment to change?

I don’t know, I haven’t figured that one out yet.

But I’ll tell you this:

The best moment to change is before you have to.

Don’t wait for the wakeup call, because by then things might have gotten bad.

Some people need to hit rock bottom before they change, but nobody says it’s got to be like that.

When it’s become too uncomfortable to stay where you are, maybe that’s the moment to choose to change.

And if that’s where you’re at, and you want to make big important changes, maybe we should talk.

Because coaching is all about change.

But only when you’re really, REALLY ready for it.

Let me know when you’re ready…



Also published on Medium.

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