Here are ten principles of change as described by Stan Goldberg, PhD, on Psychology Today.
1. All behaviors are complex
- Break down the behavior into smaller parts and conquer them one at a time.
2. Change is frightening
- Examine the consequences.
- Prepare your observers, introduce them slowly to the change.
- Be realistic with goals.
3. Change must be positive
- Reinforcement works, punishment does not.
- Enjoy the act.
- Admire the outcome.
- Reward yourself when you meet your objectives.
4. Being is easier than becoming
- Activities that bring more pain than gain are the ones people drop first.
- Take baby steps.
- Simplify the process, remember the KISS rule: Keep It Short and Simple.
- Prepare for problems: make a backup plan and be flexible enough to take alternative roads when the main path is blocked.
5. Slower is better
- Establish calm.
- Appreciate the path – it’s also the journey that matters.
6. Know more, do better
- Monitor your behaviors: keep a journal to track your success.
- Request feedback.
- Understand the outcome.
7. Change requires structure
- Identify what works, eliminate unhelpful stuff.
- Revisit your plan regularly: make your plan organic, change tactics instead of strategies.
- Logically sequence events.
8. Practice is necessary
- Use helpers – ask people you trust.
- Practice in many settings.
9. New behaviors must be protected
- Control your environment, make it work for you.
- Use memory aides.
10. Small successes are big
- Map your success.
- Break the overall success in smaller successful moments, it builds self-esteem.