small meaningful things

five stages of personal transformation

excerpted from dayone, my private journalling app

I feel like achieving new values / ways of life is like the five stages of grief. First there is denial: the denial of any need to change, then there is anger: the frustration of having to change coupled with the frustration of where old ways are inducing suffering; then there is bargaining: maybe I don’t have to change so much, just a little, or maybe my old way of life is acceptable; then there is depression: where everything falls and there is a true realisation that we cannot go back to how we used to live; and finally there is acceptance: what was so disturbing and uncomfortable becomes the new norm. Maybe in between there’s a stage where we are self-conscious and uncomfortable in adopting this new way of life.

  • Step 1: Notice something is unhealthy
  • Step 2: Find the source of that unhealthy anxiety
  • Step 3: develop a compassion and nurturing for that hurt child
  • Step 4: struggle as the hurt child will mourn the hurt and grief, all the pain hidden and felt, all the non-acknowledgment, all the unfairness, all that wasted time
  • Step 5: grow the force that will unconditionally love the child
  • Step 6: the child’s hurt is tended to and finally acknowledged. The child is set free
  • Step 7: We’re no longer haunted and subjected by the child’s desperate pain and need for attention
  • Step 8: We become who we are supposed to be, without the weight of what had always weighed us down