Positive Change

Ahhhhh.  Alas, we have reached the month of March when we can begin to enjoy the very first signs of spring.  Although we are never quite certain in the month of March whether we will need to shovel snow off the driveway or grab a light jacket for a day where temperatures reach 60 or 70, it is nevertheless a month where we begin to anticipate that spring is on its way. 

Change…March is certainly about change.  Positive change in fact, and this brings to mind this month’s topic:  Looking forward to POSITIVE CHANGE in our lives.  Certainly our lives will always have times where it feels like “winter” is drudging on and the cold days of life are here to stay.  But March is a reminder that we are people of seasons…that warmer air and positive change are seldom far away.

What positive change can I look forward to in my life?  What in my life might represent “old man winter” and what changes could represent “the beginning of new life and spring”? 

Change is certainly never an easy process for any of us, but positive change at least has the fruits of something beneficial for us to look forward to, as is the case with winter making way for spring.  My challenge for all of us this month is to begin the process of looking towards positive change.  There is a favorite question that many of us counselors love to ask in session:  “If you woke up tomorrow and a miracle had occurred in your life…things were different…you were truly happy for the first time in a long while…what would tomorrow look like?”  The answer to this question often evokes conversation about the small or large changes that most of us would like to see in our lives.  Of course this discussion also involves processing what stands in the way of happiness and positive change.

Most of us are very familiar with the Serenity Prayer:  “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”  As this prayer says, there are certainly things in our lives that we cannot change.  But guess what – there are many things in our lives that we do have control over. 

One way to begin positive change is to ask oneself “the miracle question” (mentioned earlier).  Perhaps write this question down on the top of a piece of paper, then begin answering it.  Some individuals even like to divide this into two columns:  those things we do not have control over and those things we do.  The things we do not have control over in our lives involve acceptance, and this can be a difficult process as well.  However, the things that we do have control over will involve taking steps towards positive change. 

Indeed, change is seldom an easy process but it is one that is well worth it.  Given that change can be difficult, we are always here to help.  Enjoy the month of March, and as you begin to see the beginning signs of spring, let this be a reminder of our own quest for positive change!

Robert Taylor , MS, LPC

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