As a counselor, I see people that want to change something about themselves, but are they actually ready to do it. They may want to stop being depressed or less anxious or be able to manage their anger better. They may be having marital or relationship issues or even having a hard time parenting their children.
There are actually five stages of change. Precontemplation is the starting point of change. The costs of the problem behavior is not recognized. The individual is in denial and is not seriously considering changing their behavior. They may have made previous attempts to change, but have since given up. Contemplation is the point where there is ambivalence about change. The individual recognizes reasons to change their behavior, but still has hesitations. The problem behavior continues. Preparation is the stage that the individual has decided to make a change and begins to consider how to do so. Minor adjustments in behavior may be made during this stage. (This is the stage where you may start to actually make changes.) Action is taken to end the previous problem behavior. The individual may be avoiding previous triggers, reaching out for help, or taking other steps to avoid temptation. Maintenance is the stage where the changes made during the action stage are maintained. The individual may continue to face challenges maintaining the change.
The individual may Relapse, which is often a 6th stage of change. After making changes, many individuals will eventually return to their previous problem behaviors. It can take several passes through the stages to permanently end a behavior.
You do not pass through the stages of change in order you can skip around. You could be in the action stage and something happens and you relapse for a while and then you go back through the precontemplation phase again.
One thing about change is you have to do it for yourself and not anyone else. If you need help with your change please seek professional help.
I am available please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.