It’s an interesting exercise to review your life from a distance, impartially. Doing this allows you to compare how you were in the past with what you have become. You will see that you have gone through a process of character modification. Probably you were not aware of how you were changing subtly, over time. How you have responded to your experiences has shaped the person you have become. It is possible to use this information wisely. By exerting more awareness over your experiences and responses, you can alter yourself in a positive way. In doing so you can set the ground work to be the change you wish to see in the world. In order to achieve this you have to first examine yourself, then go on to think on a larger scale, beyond you own life.
The Process of Personal Change
As you go through life it seems as if a tailoring process takes place. Your character becomes honed down as you progress. Experience teaches you what works or doesn’t work for you. Therefore there is less trial and error involved in your decision making. Even though your lifestyle is likely to be more demanding or complicated than previously, you yourself become less complicated. You have a clearer relationship with yourself. That is to say you develop a greater understanding of who you are, what your strengths and weaknesses are. Consequently you have a better idea of what makes you happy, and what you main concerns are.
Your Relationship To Your Characters of The Past
At times when you look back at how you were previously, you hardly recognise yourself as being the same person. The transformation often happens gradually so that you are hardly aware of it. However if you examine the before and after over, say, a decade, it can come as a surprise. Going through this exercise is an opportunity to examine the trajectory of your life, and take note of how changes have happened and why. In this way you can gain a deeper understanding of the direction your life has taken.
Be the Change You Wish to See in Yourself
Before you think about how to change the world around you, you have to take on your immediate approach to life. If you want to make changes in your life or point yourself in a certain direction, it helps to visualise what you would like that to be. Then you can focus your energy on being the sort of person who would inhabit that world, and accordingly shape your behaviour to suit. Changing yourself and aiming to be the person you aspire to be sets you on the right track.
Extend the Reach: Be The Change You Wish To See In The World
Once you have established the foundations for your personal development, you can consider how this will have an impact on the world around you. Making alterations in yourself will have an impact on others in your environment, whether they realise it or not. Everyone’s behaviour exerts a subconscious influence on everyone else. If you keep an awareness of the notion that you can be the change you wish to see in the world, you will notice little opportunities cropping up that will help you make more active contributions. Even if you only extend your reach a little way, it will bring results for your surroundings, and the people in it. Sometimes a tiny effort can bring more results than you imagine.
Be The Change You Wish To See In The World, But Do It Slowly
Change is best when it is slow and steady. Looking back on your life is a good way to witness how the natural life transformation has taken years. It follows that if you want to change yourself and exert a positive influence on the world, small increments are more sustainable than large, terrifying leaps.
All photos taken by Ju Underwood at Jodrell Bank Observatory, UK