While we all want to believe that we know how to live our lives at some point we realize that our strategy probably wasn’t the best one. (Of course, you won’t have this realization if you already feel that your life is in balance.)
Change is an essential part of life balance because you can’t grow as a person without changing your habits, lifestyle and your attitude. However, making that change is not always easy.
The first, and most difficult, step is admitting that you were wrong. If the change involves only you then this first step is not too bad (for example, if you know that you need to lose weight you can admit that your diet previously wasn’t the best choice.) However, admitting that you were wrong in a relationship, in your attitude at or towards work as well as many other life situations becomes increasingly more difficult.
And, most importantly, no life balance can be achieved without the Change.
A blogging friend of mine Alex Blackwell of The BridgeMaker has just released his first book Saying Yes to Change: 10 Timeless Life Lessons for Creating Positive Change which is now available on Amazon. I had an opportunity to read the book and to ask Alex a few questions. I think that everyone will benefit from the lessons shared by Alex in his book and in this interview.
Alex, what motivated you to write a book about change?
It’s been a story in the making for the past nine years. In 2003, my life was at a crossroads. On the verge of losing my wife, I decided it was time to change. The spiritual and personal formation seminar I mention early in the book provided the kick start needed.
A few years after attending the seminar, I started The BridgeMaker. It was soon clear that my message, and personal journey, resonated with many readers. So, long answer short, I decided to put my story in one place, a book, to inspire others to begin walking their paths to positive change, too.
What was the most difficult change that you had to make in life? What gave you strength to do it?
The most difficult thing I had to do was to acknowledge that my life was no longer working. For several years leading up to my marital separation in 2003, I was on autopilot.
I stopped investing in personal relationships; my focus was too much on my career and I became depressed. It wasn’t until my wife told me how unhappy she was and that she didn’t see a future for us, did I become motivated to change.
I didn’t want to lose my family or wife so I took that first step outside of my comfort zone and into fear. A few steps after that, I could see Fear wasn’t going to kill me so I kept taking more steps until I started seeing the change that I knew lived inside, but was too scared to come out.
In the book you share 10 timeless lessons for positive change. What was the most important lesson that you learned in life?
I think the chapter (or lesson) that seems to provide its power to me whenever I need it most and makes me feel strong on the days I feel weak is Lesson Nine: Take Down the White Flag.
I’m tempted to raise the white flag in defeat when I begin listening to the enemy of my soul. The enemy waits patiently and then whispers the lie he knows will persuade me to give up: “You don’t deserve it. You can’t possibly achieve it. So, why bother?”
But, today I’m learning to replace the lie with the truth. When I do this, I’m able to take down the white flag and replace it with a beautiful, new flag.
What, in your opinion, is the biggest benefit that the readers will get from your book?
Saying Yes to Change: 10 Timeless Life Lessons for Creating Positive Change is for anyone who feels the nudge to change; and it’s for people who are already walking the paths to positive change. If you feel stuck, alone or scared, the book will inspire you to acknowledge what you need to heal or change so you can begin living a happier, more meaningful life – right now.
Alex, in the last lesson you talk about Faith. How does faith guide you in life?
I believe we are born to fulfill a purpose that is unique to each one of us. Early in blogging, there were many times I felt like giving up. But I felt a nudge that kept prompting me not to surrender. This nudge is my faith and it’s been a constant companion giving me strength in times of weakness.
My faith has given me the power to provide forgiveness and then to ask for forgiveness; it has helped me reframe my past and my faith is helping me create a beautiful life today.
Finally, we all know that change can be overwhelming and frustrating. Can you share several tips for a balanced life change?
There are three things I try to do every day to live a balanced life:
- Look for the gray in every situation – things usually aren’t just black or white.
- Don’t get too excited about the highs and don’t get too sad about the lows – life has a way of balancing itself out.
- When someone asks for love – give it freely, unconditionally.
If you feel that Change is what you need in life today then check out Alex’s book Saying Yes to Change: 10 Timeless Life Lessons for Creating Positive Change. It’s definitely worth your time!