This is a title of an article I recently came across in a health related magazine. Amazing results in just days! The attraction of the quick fix is strong, especially when you’re feeling emotional distress. If you feel worthless, have no appetite, want to stay in bed all day, are extremely emotional or feel tension, anxiety and discomfort wouldn’t it be wonderful to have “amazing results in just days?”
Unfortunately, the quick fix for extreme and intense emotion is often the one that makes the problem worse in the long run. Drowning your feelings in alcohol, eating excessively to soothe your nerves, smoking, distracting yourself with sex or the thrill of gambling. These problem behaviors often result in a momentary relief from emotional pain, but they also result in the pain returning, usually more intensely. They also result in additional health, relationship and financial problems.
To achieve lasting improvement in your mental health and well-being typically takes time, is often incremental and requires a commitment. So how do you stick with it, when those amazing changes actually take time and hard work?
- When you lose motivation, don’t quit. You often need to re-commit to stick with it.
- Don’t assume a set-back equals failure. Change is difficult, doesn’t always occur at the pace you hope and strategies sometimes don’t work in the moment. That doesn’t mean that change is impossible or that treatment won’t work. You may have to figure out the problem and keep trying.
- Remember why you originally chose to make a change to improve your life helps maintain commitment over the long haul.
- People keep commitments they believe in better than those they do not believe in. Remind yourself of prior commitments and why you made them.
- Remind yourself that you have everything within yourself to overcome problems.
I wish the claims that I so frequently read these days were true. It would be so easy if change were amazing and quick. If, for you, it is slow and difficult, don’t give up. Lasting change might be hard, but it is usually worth the effort.