Posted in psychology

Can we change our behaviour in an instant?

Is it a strange habit to start counting the number of stairs you are climbing up?

Interestingly, my experience of simply trying to count the steps revealed an interesting insight – It indeed takes time to change a behaviour!

So here we go.

The last couple of months, I have been taking the stairs instead of an elevator [an attempt to get fit!]. I had this habit of counting how many steps I climb up and how many steps does each floor have. Oh yes, I noticed that the number of steps to reach third floor are 26 instead of the usual 24 for other floors. So, everyday, it was the same routine. Take the stairs and feel good that I have climbed around 190-200 steps! 

Then one day, I got out my pedometer that I had bought a year ago and started using it. I quickly realized that I don’t have to count the number of steps I am climbing. All I had to do was to find out the starting count and then subtract that from the final count to get the number of steps I have climbed. Despite using the pedometer for a week, I still was counting the steps – my usual way! I had simply forgotten that I should change my way of counting; but it was hard for me. When I am climbing, I just would count sub-consciously and completely forget about my pedometer!

It took me about a week to change my behaviour. 

But the insight I gained was powerful enough. As children, we trust in everything. As we grow older, our ability to trust others, trust the Providence, trust that someone would do a good job [as well as, if not better than us] goes down. It is probably because we are still in our old pattern of thinking. It takes time to change that behaviour.

Counting steps is probably one of the most trivial activity; yet it took time for me to adapt to a new process, a new way of thinking.

Attitudes about people, about the nature are hard engraved in our mind. We have set notions about a few things. Despite someone showing us a new way, a new skill, it takes time to adapt to it [although I agree we are intelligent and each of us know and can comprehend what value the new process is going to bring].

So, the next time you find yourself being impatient that your colleague or friend is still doing things the old way, look at yourself and develop patience! He is probably changing at his pace. You change yourself to be more patient !
How about you?
Have you noticed any patterns that are difficult for you to change? Any behaviour that you know is something that you would like to change, but are finding it hard to change?

Please share your thoughts.



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