Why do we wait? Why do we hold off doing things we know we should? Things that will be beneficial to our health and wellbeing?
Because deep down, we are lazy. Our brain and body want the path of least resistance and staying the same is easy. Staying in the same habits or places or with people is comfortable – no matter how uncomfortable is actually is. It’s usually only when things get really REALLY bad that we finally concede and start making the necessary changes to get in a better spot. Let’s face it – change is hard and it sucks – and it’s simply easier to stay where we are.
We do it in relationships. They could be verbally or physically abusive. There could be gas lighting. Deep down we know it’s wrong. Deep down we know we deserve better and yet we hold on. If I love him more, he’ll change. If I wasn’t so naggy he wouldn’t be so defensive. If I just did more for him we wouldn’t argue so much. If I kept the house cleaner, he wouldn’t call me a slob. If I lost weight or looked a certain way he wouldn’t cheat on me.
We stay in a job because it could be worse; at least I know what to expect. If I try harder, I’ll get recognized. If I did more, I’d get that promotion.
How can I leave the city where I grew up? All my friends are here but so are the bad memories. Every day I drive past the school where I was bullied. I drive past the night club where I was raped. I visit my mom in the house where my dad physically abused us. I go home and watch someone across the street passed out from alcohol or drugs – or both – and hope my kids do better.
I can’t miss my Friday night out with the girls. We drink too much, eat shitty food, bitch about the friends who ditched us that night, and the rest of the weekend I’m nursing a hangover. If I’m not there, they’ll talk about me. If I’m there, I need to drink to keep up. Their my friends.
I’m certain as you’re reading this, you see the absurdity of it. And yet, for most in these situations and more, it’s much harder to see when you’re actually in it. We get in this deluded state that things will change – when, in actuality, they won’t. The only way for things to change is if YOU do. By removing yourself from toxic friendships, abusive relationships, unappreciative employment, or destructive environments. When you want something SO BAD, there tends to be no boundaries and people will walk all over you – because you allow it.
What will it take for you to believe that you deserve better? That you don’t deserve to get hit? Or get cheated on?
You need to take responsibility for your own happiness and your own life. No one can do it for you. And those people you hang out with – whether friends, colleagues, or a partner – they should bring out the best in you, not the worst. If they constantly bring out the worst, you need to do something about it. Stop pausing and take action!
I know it’s scary. But what is the alternative?
Believe in yourself. Believe you deserve better. Make the change.