Most people believe making significant changes in our lives is difficult, if not impossible. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

The real problems we have with change come from three things;

we don’t realize how often we change our minds,

we don’t know how little effort it takes to change our minds, and

we don’t know how to stop telling ourselves the stories we use to justify why we don’t change.

These reasons disappear once we have options that can actually get us from where we are to where we want to be.


In order to really Transform our life, two things must happen.

We must be able to interrupt our old habit, so we can make a different choice.

If we can’t break our old habits, how can we do something different?

We must have better skills to use after we interrupt the habit, so we can make better choices. This is the part that has been missing.

If we cannot change the way we create the next moment in our life, none of the techniques that have us focus on something else, such as exercise, music, meditation, or mindfulness practices will produce different futures. Those practices just distract us for a while.

Using them certainly helps us tolerate the futures we create more easily, and possibly decrease the number of times we create them, but the same kind of future remains our only option, because creating that one kind of future is what our current skill will create, over, and over again.

Wanting to change is not knowing HOW, or WHAT, to change. Motivation, by itself, is not enough.

Change is a skill we can master. We must have a way to produce more accurate results than the old skill was producing. To make this step possible we must update, or repair, the skills we have.

It is fairly obvious that Math, Language, and Driving are skills. We are taught how they work and we practice them until we develop a degree of competence. After some time, our level of ability to use them becomes a subconscious habit, and we perform the skills without even thinking about how they work.

It may not be nearly so obvious that the following are also skills.

• Emotions
• Needs
• Wants
• Values
• Self-esteem
• Identity
• Facts
• Habits
• Relationships
• Parenting

The difference between the first group of skills and this list of skills is simple. For Math, Language, and Driving, we are taught standardized rules, and we practice them under supervision until we meet a level of competence. In the case of driving, we pass a driving test and get a license to operate a vehicle.

For the skills on the second list we make up our own rules. We watch and copy the behaviors of our parents, friends, family, teachers, preachers, and television celebrities, the examples from our environment. We use our conclusions about how we think they use these skills to create our own rules. We then practice the rules we made up until
they become our subconscious habits.

There are three skills that cause almost of our serious problems and we learned them before we were three years of age; how to do emotions, choices, and relationships.

The incredible number of problems that arise from our use of these skills that we taught ourselves when we were toddlers, show us our own rules are usually, or at least frequently, incorrect.

There are rules, however, for the skills on the list that can empower us to attain the same quality results as we do in Math, Language, and Driving.

Updating the skills in our old brain offers the only viable way to transform our lives and become the kind of person we want to be.

Next: Relationships: the most important skill.

© 2017 Douglas McKee