A recent discovery, and one I recommend, is the ebook ‘There’s a Part of Me…’ by J. Schwartz and B. Brennan (© 2013 Trailheads Publications). The authors posit we are all made up of different parts, that together, form our basic nature and personality; and our ‘thinking’ is conversations between our different parts. When our different parts want different things for us, that can lead to inner confusion, conflict and so on. The authors offer an effective way to identify then listen to our parts, and act on our findings. If you ever hear yourself say “there’s a part of me that wants to do X, but another part of me wants to do Y”, and you can’t move forward with clarity and confidence, this book may help. See The Centre for Self Leadership, Illinois, USA. http://www.selfleadership.org/
Changing our personal behaviours isn’t an easy or fast process. In 1977 James Prochaska and Carlo Clemente developed a Transtheoretical Model of Change which shows the different stages we progress through: Pre-contemplation (we realise our behaviour may be problematic but we’re considering the impact of our actions; we’re not ready to do too much about it); Preparation (we have the intention to do something about specific behaviours); Action (we deliberately take steps; we change old behaviours); Maintenance (we have our new behaviours embedded; we work to avoid slipping back to old behaviours); and Termination (we know we won’t revert back to old behaviours).
The researchers saw relapsing back into old behaviours wasn’t a stage in itself but more a return from action or maintenance mode to earlier stages. Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transtheoretical_model
Personal change takes time. We may be in the different stages for different periods of time. We can’t be forced to change – it is entirely our choice to do so.