The Kenyan Nomad

The Kenyan Nomad

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Can We Change?

Can anyone ever really change themselves? It's a question that's been asked over and over again, with people arguing (strongly) for both sides. Nature vs. nurture does play into it at some point, as does personal decisiveness. As people, we get locked into habits and behaviours that seem to get stronger the older we get. Think hard, and you'll notice that who we are is also largely a product of the people we're around. It's crazy, but so many people I know, including my siblings and myself, are eerily similar to their parents in some ways.

The question remains; is it possible for someone to really change? To create new habits, new behaviours, new ways of doing things? Honestly, I believe it's definitely possible. Of course, in order to change, a catalyst is (almost always) needed. A person has to want to, or has to realise that something around them, about them, is not working as optimally as it should. Change is possible, but definitely needs inspiration.

'They' say that the first step is the hardest. I disagree. The first step? It's the easiest. A person recognises a problem, or something they would like to achieve, and starts to work on it. However, once they've started to implement change, it's so much easier to revert back to who they once were, to habits that have been around for years, to patterns of thinking that have been in place for a while. I know this because I've experienced it myself; personally and by observation of people around me. How do we get around this? Awareness and dedication. Awareness of ourselves, our likelihood to slip back into old patterns, and a dedication to change, a real desire that must come from within.

It really doesn't matter what inspires us. Everyone draws inspiration from different things; a strong character from a TV show, change in circumstance that forces personal change, the people around us, and more often than not, plain boredom and frustration with our current circumstances. It's still early January, and I've vowed that 2015 is going to be a year of change for me; I haven't quite figured out my inspiration, but my goals are much clearer, and the way I'm tackling them is by breaking them down as small as I can. Bit by bit, day by day, I'm trying out 'different' till it fits and feels right and till the person I show to myself and those around me is as similar as possible to the person I show everyone else. Aren't we all?

On the same note, we all wonder whether we can truly change other people. Harsh as it may seem, I don't think this is possible. Yes, we can provide a catalyst. We can inspire, we can support, we can hope, and (not that this gets many results) we can nag. At the end of the day, true change must come from within. As a famous man once said, "Be the change that you wish to see in the world."

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