Changing Behaviour Patterns – Yes it’s difficult

I would like to credit this revelation to Helena Barnard of the Gordon Institute of Business Science in Johannesburg, South Africa. I did not know how to articulate this and then she simply appeared on stage and “opened my mind.” Thank you for this insight.

When we study self-development or self-improvement materials it is not that difficult to start seeing patterns.

There are predominantly two schools of thought:

What to change

What to change

How to change

How to change

Each of these has proven results, can cite thousands of people who have used these methods and have irrevocably changed their lives.

The fact of the matter is that they are right – Given the correct circumstances, either of these programs will produce positive results.

If we evaluate the “law of attraction” really close, then we would find that they have a “magic” key. What the law of attraction basically states is that you perform the first step of either of these two thought patterns really well and effectively allow “nature” to take its course. Effectively by doing phase 1 of either of these two processes really well, your natural problem solving techniques will drive you to achieving the “imagined” results.

What is the point?

It is simple really. That is not the full story. Believe me.

If you follow me on this journey you will discover a few things that the materials don’t broadcast, simply because it is not sexy, cool, sell well and honestly makes the whole thing sound like work.

Imagine you are the parent of a growing child. You have been appointed by our leaders, nature, God, and society in general to educate this child in such a way that he or she can fit into the social structure without too much sharp edges and friction. We all know how bad the broken children are and that they eventually grow to be the criminals – because criminals don’t come from well-rounded backgrounds (giggle).

The only lesson in life we have to focus on is the – Brush your teeth each day (sometimes – twice!!!)

Answer a few questions:

  • How long does this take?
  • What are the chances that you would leave the house with un-brushed teeth?
  • Do children learn faster or slower than adults?
  • What would it take for you to “forget” to brush your teeth?
  • How often do you teach the child this?
  • If you discover that you have forgotten to brush your teeth, what do you do?
  • When do you stop teaching the child?

I can see the penny dropping.

Yes, the questions were posed in a mixed format for a reason.

Is that a grin?

Let me answer some of these in a discussion format. (Answer the rest yourself – it is a bright smile realisation exercise.)

We all know that it takes years for a child to form a (here is the big word now!!!) routine. Yes, that’s right a routine, you know the stuff you “fall into” at work, the rut that eventually becomes your life, a routine.

We can only stop teaching a child to actively remember to brush their teeth when it has become a thoughtless, non-cerebral and irrevocable part of the fabric that is his / her life. It does not have an expiry period only a result outcome.

So why do we then think that we can stop the “re-programming” as mentioned by the self-help, self-development or self-improvement experts?

Why would we be so eager to believe that we can achieve amazing results without work?

Shocking, I felt it too…..


Sparkling Smile

Sparkling Smile



So what is the answer?

Honestly, you expect me to tell you this?

Read the questions about children and toothbrushes…..

Have an awesome day…


One thought on “Changing Behaviour Patterns – Yes it’s difficult

  1. Pingback: How Reward Influence Change « Anton van den Berg – Blog

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